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Lenten Reflection

News and Events

St. Jude Coat Drive benefits Emmaus
November 15, 2017

The annual coat drive at St. Jude Parish, in Erie, for Emmaus guests is always a success – but this year it was even better thanks to two innovative ideas.

First, thanks to a creative idea by St. Jude Catholic School 8th grader Charlie Rutkowski, there was an abundance of children’s winter coats. “Last year, I realized we didn’t have enough coats for children,” said Charlie, who has been helping to collect and organize coats and warm clothing for the past few years. “So this year, I talked to the principal at St. Jude and asked if we could offer a promotion for the students: donate...

Soctober benefits Sister Gus’ Kids Cafe
November 14, 2017

After watching a popular YouTube video, Mrs. Boxer’s third grade class at Blessed Sacrament Catholic School in Erie decided to host their own version of a “Socktober” in which they collected socks for children at Sister Gus’ Kids Cafe.

The YouTube video, A Pep Talk with Kid President and Grover, introduces the idea of “Socktober” as a month to help the homeless and those that lack basic needs. Kid President, only a child himself, says: “You’re never too small to make a big difference.”

“Inspired by the YouTube video, the kids who participated [in Socktober] were supposed to...

Now available: The 2018 Joan Chittister Calendar
November 10, 2017

Throughout history there have been fiery trail-blazing women who spoke their truth and changed history. And the 2018 Joan Chittister Calendar honors twelve of them. Insightful and inspiring quotes from Sister Joan echo the wisdom of such luminaries as Fannie Lou Hamer, Joan of Arc, Four Women Martyrs of El Salvador, Susan B. Anthony, Rachel Carson....Erie artist Marcy Hall (2016 Joan Chittister calendar) returns with her vibrant, whimsical, yet deeply reflective paintings that capture the essence of each of these remarkable women.

Included in the calendar is a bonus gift: A two-page...

Pies for Emmaus guests
November 8, 2017

Kindergarteners and preschoolers (with the help of their teachers) from Saint Luke Catholic School made 22 pies for the guests of Emmaus Soup Kitchen. Half the pies were pumpkin, the other half were apple. The children picked bushels upon bushels of apples in an orchard the week before they made the pies.

“How did you make these pies?” asked Breanna Mekuly, Emmaus Ministries staff member, when she met with the classes of students to thank them for sharing the pies with the guests of Emmaus.

Hands shot up in the air to respond. “I brought the sugar!” said one little boy. “And...

Streambank gets a new look
November 7, 2017

The Benedictine Sisters of Erie applied for and were awarded a $140,000 Penn State Sea Grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection’s Growing Greener Program to restore a stretch of Seven-Mile Creek which runs through property belonging to the Erie Benedictines and empties into Lake Erie.

Several months of work aimed at countering the effects of erosion by widening and strengthening 500 feet of a streambank buffer have been completed. Restoration monitoring to improve fish habitat, water quality and the...

Mark your calendars: 2018 Mid-Life / Long-Life Retreat Dates have been posted
November 3, 2017

Mark your calendar now for a weekend experience to refocus in the midst of life's changes with a Mid-Life/Long-Life Retreat for Personal and Spiritual Growth for Adults. The 2018 dates have now been posted: May 18 – 20 and September 8 – 9.

The September 2017 Mid-life/Long-life Retreat let the presenters, Sister Rosanne Loneck and Kathleen Kutz, know that this worthwhile experience needed to be made available again. Sixteen participants from Maryland, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Carolina and Texas participated in that particular weekend. The most common comment of those...

Dr. Diana Hayes at the Mount
November 2, 2017

“Difference is not dangerous; difference is Divine,” began Dr. Diana Hayes, featured speaker for the Erie Benedictines’ recent community weekend. “Our differences come from God; God created all in God’s image.”

Throughout her career, Dr. Hayes has lectured extensively on issues of race, class, gender and religion, womanist and Black theologies, women in the Catholic Church, and African American Religions. In her time with the community and its oblates she shared her insights on the challenge of racism today by exploring the history of racism in the United States, including...

2017 Oblate Commitment Ceremony
November 1, 2017

The Benedictine Sisters of Erie welcomed nine new initiates into the Oblate Way of Life during Vigil Prayer on Saturday evening, October 28, in the chapel at Mount St. Benedict Monastery. The initiates expressed the desire to deepen their faith by studying the Rule of Benedict and living the Gospel values of peace and justice more intensely.

Sister Anne Wambach, prioress, presented each with a copy of the Rule: “Receive this Rule of Benedict. May it be light for your nights and hope for your days and may light and hope continue to enliven your hearts with passion for the...

Community of Life and Hope: Do you have something or somebody you would like us to remember in our prayers?
October 31, 2017

Join us in our 2017 Community of Life program for November.

During November the Church traditionally prays in a special way for all the departed. Each of you are invited to join us in prayer pray during this month for our deceased loved ones and friends.

Simply send us the names of those you would like remembered during the month of November, in which All Saints and All Souls are celebrated. Not only do the sisters pray, in a special way, for all those who have died but also for the special intentions of the living.

Those enrolled in the Community of Life will be...

Women's Writing Circle: Sign Up NOW for the Last Session of 2017
October 30, 2017

The last 2017 meeting of the Women's Writing Circle will be Wednesday, November 1, from 6:30 - 7:45 p.m. at the Writing Studio, 310 East 10th Street. Parking in rear of building.

The Writing Circle is open to writers and non-writers alike. Each session includes discussion of a short reading on a writing topic, introduction of a writing theme through stories and poems, a writing prompt, time for personal writing, and optional sharing in large and small groups. Stephanie and Breanna, above, participated in the July session.

The Writing Circle...

Food Pantry Volunteers throw Dmitry’s 90th Birthday Party
October 28, 2017

“This birthday experience is so unique,” said Sister Lucia Surmik, coordinator of the Emmaus Food Pantry. “It’s a one of a kind situation – we’ve never before had a volunteer that’s 90 years old!”

But this year the Food Pantry did celebrate – in grand style – a 90th birthday party for Dmitry Tishenhenko. Dmitry, who grew up in Ukraine, moved with his family of 11 children to the United States 23 years ago. Soon after, Dmitry began volunteering at the Food Pantry and has been there since.

“He’s been with us at the pantry so long, he’s part of the family,” said Sister Rosane...