Use your gifts, spread God's love

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

All followers of Christ are called to build God’s kingdom and spread God’s love. And each of us has the responsibility to discern prayerfully how we can best live this call in our lives.

First and foremost, it is important to remember that God calls everyone. You received your most important call at baptism. In that primary sacrament of our faith, you became a member of Christ’s body, the Church, and were called to help bring about the reign of God in this world. The challenge is to discern how God wants you to help carry out this mission and to best use the gifts God has given you.

Teach us to pray

Sunday, September 27, 2015

Teach us to pray
Luke 11:1
  1. Quiet yourself; be still inside and out.
  2. Realize you are nothing without God; declare your trust in Divine Providence.
  3. Ask God for the grace you want and need.
  4. Read and reflect on your Scripture passage; read the passage slowly, letting the words wash over you; stay with the words that catch your attention.
  5. Place yourself in the situation; listen to what is being said; watch what happens; become part of the mystery; substitute your name; and listen. What is going on in your soul as you experience the passage? What difference does it make for society, for your family, for your life, as you hear the message?
  6. Close the prayer period with a conversation with God — our Father, Jesus and Holy Spirit. Be yourself.
  7. Spend some time reviewing your prayer
Make Jesus a personal part of your life. Strive to know and love him more deeply. Communicate with him regularly in prayer. He is always here for us.

Prayer as Pope Francis addresses U.N.

Thursday, September 24, 2015

On September 25, Pope Francis addresses the delegates to the U.N. General Assembly, stressing the urgent need for a vigorous international response to climate change and other environmental degradation, as well as the vast inequities that exist on our planet.

We invite you to join Catholics throughout the world in prayer for openness to the pope’s message using the prayer service “Caring for our Common Home.” Based on the papal encyclical Laudato si′, the prayer will help all of us more deeply internalize some of the key themes of the document.

We also encourage you to sign the Global Catholic Climate Movement’s petition (endorsed by Pope Francis) which calls on world leaders to cut carbon emissions to keep the global temperature rise below the 1.5°C threshold and help the world’s poorest people and nations cope with climate change impacts.

The “Caring for our Common Home” prayer service also is available in French, Portuguese and Spanish

Pope's visit excites travelers

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Our sisters and novices will be in attendance today when Pope Francis celebrates Mass in Washington, D.C. We are grateful for this once-in-a-lifetime experience for our Congregation to be present and to pray with Pope Francis during this historic visit. You can watch the live stream of the Mass at 4:15 p.m. EDT at:

A Mass that makes history

Monday, September 21, 2015

The Mass celebrated by Pope Francis on the east portico of the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington, D.C., on Wednesday, September 23, will make history. It will be the first public Mass celebrated by Pope Francis in the United States, as well as the first canonization to take place in the United States. Pope Francis will be canonizing Blessed Junipero Serra, a Spanish-born Franciscan friar known for starting nine Spanish missions in California in the 1700s.

And four Holy Cross sisters and our 11 novices will be in attendance for this once-in-a-lifetime experience! Truly an extraordinary celebration for the Year of Consecrated Life! See photos of their trip to Washington, D.C., on our Facebook page.

Family of Holy Cross featured in PBS documentary

Friday, September 18, 2015

The premiere of a PBS documentary featuring the Congregations of Holy Cross will air at 8:30 p.m., September 21, on WNIT channel 34.1 in Northern Indiana and Southwest Michigan. Titled Sacred Mission–Civic Duty: The Holy Cross Family, the documentary looks at how Holy Cross has been influential to the growth and development of South Bend, Indiana. The film is part of WNIT’s celebration of the city’s 150th anniversary.

Sacred Mission–Civic Duty explores the history and impact of the Holy Cross sisters, brothers and priests on education, health care, arts and culture, and the economy in South Bend and surrounding communities. Through interviews with Father John Jenkins, president of the University of Notre Dame, Brother Chester Freel, superior of the Midwest Province of the Brothers of Holy Cross, Sister M. Veronique (Wiedower), president of the Sisters of the Holy Cross, and many others, WNIT viewers will learn how their lives are influenced by the congregations, regardless of their religious faith.

Rebroadcasts of Sacred Mission–Civic Duty are scheduled to air on WNIT at 4 p.m., September 26; 7 p.m., October 1; and 9 p.m., October 12.

Year of Consecrated Life, feast days celebrated

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

The assembly holds lit candles as a sign of commitment to continue serving the people of God.
Sister M. Veronique (Wiedower), president of the Sisters of the Holy Cross, welcomed those gathered September 13 in the Church of Our Lady of Loretto at Saint Mary’s, Notre Dame, Indiana, to a prayer service in celebration of the Year of Consecrated Life and the congregational feast days of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross and Our Lady of Sorrows.

“In this Year of Consecrated Life, we gather with gratitude for all God has done in Holy Cross in the past,” said Sister Veronique. “We trust in the Holy Spirit for all God is doing now among us and among those with whom we minister. We embrace the future with hope, rooted in the cross, for all the new things God will do in Holy Cross.”

Sister Joy O’Grady, area coordinator for the Area of North America, next led the assembly in prayer. “By name, O God, you called your servant and our founder, Blessed Basil Anthony Moreau, to walk the path of service to the Church and the world,” said Sister Joy. “United in prayer with Mary, the mother of Jesus and our compassionate mother, we ask that you give us the grace to renew our spirits and our commitment to continue on the path of responding to the needs of the Church, the world, Earth, and all creation.”

In various languages — Bangla, English, Fante, Khasi, Portuguese, Spanish and Swahili — seven sisters then repeated the phrases: remembering with gratitude our history, trusting in Divine Providence, and embracing the future with hope. The phrases were followed by songs of response.

“Each of us, in our own way,” Sister Joy continued, “holds the flame of the Sisters of the Holy Cross.” She invited the assembly to light individual tapers “as a sign of our commitment to continue serving the people of God throughout this Earth.” When all the candles were lit, Sister Joy led the gathering in a closing prayer, giving thanks to God for Father Moreau and the many courageous witnesses of faith and models of inspiration who walk the path of service.

“Gracious God,” she concluded, “we ask you to send forth your Holy Creator Spirit to guide us on the road that is yet unknown, to embrace our future with hope. Grant us courage to continue our ministry to the Church, the world, Earth and all creation.”

Feast of Our Lady of Sorrows – September 15

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Holy Mary, with strength from above you stood by the cross, sharing in the sufferings of Jesus, and with tender care you bore him in your arms, mourning and weeping. We praise you for your faith, which accepted the life God planned for you. We praise you for your hope, which trusted that God would do great things in you. We praise you for your love in bearing with Jesus the sorrows of his passion. May we follow your example and stand by all your children who need comfort and love.

At the cross her station keeping,
Mary stood in sorrow weeping
when her Son was crucified.

While she waited in her anguish,
seeing Christ in torment languish,
bitter sorrow pierced her heart.

— excerpted from Stabat Mater

Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross – September 14

Monday, September 14, 2015

O Crux, ave spes unica! Hail, O Cross, our only hope! The Cross is planted in the earth and would seem to extend its roots in human malice, but it reaches up, pointing as it were to the heavens, pointing to the goodness of God. By means of the Cross of Christ, the Evil One has been defeated, death is overcome, life is given to us, hope is restored, light is imparted.”
— Pope John Paul II
excerpt from September 14, 2003 homily

Welcome Pope Francis

Friday, September 11, 2015

In this TOGETHER! Watch this brief video in preparation for Pope Francis' visit to the United States, September 22-27.

Four Sisters of the Holy Cross and 11 novices will be in attendance when Pope Francis celebrates Mass in Washington, D.C., on September 23. We are grateful for this once-in-a-lifetime experience for our Congregation to be present and to pray with Pope Francis in this Year of Consecrated Life.

Sisters cheer on the Irish!

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Sisters Michaeleen, Rita and Gladys Marie prepare hot pretzels for the tailgate party.
The sisters held their first Notre Dame tailgate party at their newly opened Beach House Café on September 5, much to the delight of the Saint Mary’s community. Located in a previously vacant kitchen and dining room, and accomplished entirely from donations and donated service, the café is quickly becoming a popular place for sisters to gather. Some 35 sisters partied and cheered on the Irish to a 38-3 victory over the Texas Longhorns. Watch out Virginia Cavaliers! See more photos on Facebook.

Invitation to September 13 prayer service

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

During this year of consecrated life, the Sisters of the Holy Cross invite all to a special prayer service on September 13, 2015, at 4 p.m. in the Church of Our Lady of Loretto at Saint Mary's in celebration of our congregational feast days of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross and Our Lady of Sorrows. All are welcome!

Prayer to St. Joseph the Worker

Sunday, September 6, 2015

In observance of this Labor Day, may we strive to promote dignity and respect for all in the workplace. Please join us in prayer to St. Joseph the Worker.

Glorious St. Joseph,
model of all those who are devoted to labor,
obtain for me the grace to work conscientiously,
putting the call of duty above my many sins;
to work with thankfulness and joy,
considering it an honor to employ and develop,
by means of labor, the gifts received from God;
to work with order, peace, prudence and patience,
never surrendering to weariness or difficulties;
to work, above all, with purity of intention,
and with detachment from self,
having always death before my eyes
and the account which I must render of time lost,
of talents wasted, of good omitted,
of vain complacency in success so fatal to the work of God.
All for Jesus, all for Mary,
all after thy example, O Patriarch Joseph.
Such shall be my motto in life and death.
— The Notre Dame Book of Prayer

Sister Marilla's 95th birthday surprise

Friday, September 4, 2015

Sunee Fleshman and Sister Marilla
Sunee Fleshman, a Saint Mary’s College graduate, granted a surprise birthday wish for Sister Marilla yesterday in the form of 95 pink, blue, green, purple and silver balloons that floated along the ceiling of Sister’s room. The two met several years ago when Sunee was a cantor in the Church of Our Lady of Loretto at Saint Mary’s. “And she hasn’t been able to get rid of me since,” chimed in Sister Marilla. “Now there’s a faithful friend!”

Sunee lives in Indianapolis and works as a lab technician. She also is involved in a “wish-granting” organization for seniors, called Twilight Wish Foundation. It was being part of this organization that gave Sunee the idea to take a day off from work to come to Saint Mary’s and surprise Sister Marilla on her 95th birthday. She also arranged for giant silver “9” and “5” balloons to adorn a nearby table complete with a lovely pink cake.

“When I think about the blessings her presence has brought to my life,” said Sunee, “it’s hard to imagine how many more lives she must have touched in 95 years of life! I wanted to celebrate that.”

Go Irish!

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Sunee Fleshman, left, and Sister Marilla (Dyer)
The sisters are more than ready for the start of the Notre Dame football season. Sister Marilla, in particular, enjoys the gridiron battles. Here she is with Sunee Fleshman at a past game. Hoping for a win over Texas, many sister-fans concur with Knute Rockne, who once said: “I’ve found that prayers work best when you have big players.”

World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Pope Francis has declared Tuesday, September 1, as the World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation. In his letter of announcement, the pope wrote: “The annual World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation will offer individual believers and communities a fitting opportunity to reaffirm their personal vocation to be stewards of creation, to thank God for the wonderful handiwork which he has entrusted to our care, and to implore his help for the protection of creation as well as his pardon for the sins committed against the world in which we live.”