On October 8th, Sisters Joy Rose, Barbara Mathe, Elizabeth Ann Miller and Elizabeth Benvie visited the Omaha Zoo and Aquariam. It was a beautiful fall day to enjoy a community day together.
The uniqueness of each animal was well worth the time spent walking around the premises of the zoo. The fish and other aquatic animals were interesting to watch as they moved gracefully through the water. While walking around that day, the Sisters met the Wicker family from Wisconsin who were delighted to see them.
A silver backed gorilla put on a spectacular show for everyone as he moved quickly to the top of an old tree. His stance while on top of the tree seemed to say, “I’m King of the Jungle!” This gorilla mused at the children gathered to see him and at other times he turned as if to be pouting.
Let us praise God for the blessing of all animals of the land, sea and sky! Let us thank God for the wonder and awe of all of creation!
On October 8th, the Religious Sisters of the Diocese of Omaha gathered for a Mass at St. Robert Bellarmine followed by a festive luncheon provided by the Serrans of Omaha. Archbishop Emeritus Elden F. Curtiss welcomed the Sisters, thanked them for their service to the Diocese of Omaha and led the meal prayer.
The Sisters were treated to fresh fruit, sticky buns, coffee or tea. Later they were served a delicious Chicken a La King dinner. The final course of the meal was a chocolate pecan truffle dessert. Each Sister received a generous gift of a lovely long stem red rose and a $25.00 gift certificate to the Adoramus Religious Book store in Omaha.
Before the meal, the Franciscan Sisters of Christian Charity mingled with the other Religious Sisters and members of the Serran club. Sister Elizabeth Benvie met Sister Angelo Loboto, a Mercy Sister from Albuquerque, New Mexico. Sister Elizabeth Benvie is also a native of New Mexico. Following the meal, Sisters Joy Rose, Barbara Mathe, Elizabeth Ann Miller and Sister Elizabeth Benvie sang the Blessing of St. Francis on behalf of all of the Religious Sisters to thank the Serrans for providing the meal and their generous gifts.
The Franciscan Sisters celebrated St. Francis’ transition from death to life on October 3rd. This celebration is known as the Transitus. Sister Elizabeth Ann Miller and Sister Elizabeth Benvie had Parent/Teacher conferences on October 3rd. While they were having their conferences at Guardian Angels Central Catholic School, Sister Barbara Mathe and Sister Joy Rose surprised them with a basket of almond cookies to distribute to the parents. These homemade almond cookies were in remembrance of Lady Jacoba. Lady Jacoba was known to have been a friend of St. Francis and his brothers. She often provided gracious hospitality to the St. Francis and his brothers. While on his deathbed, St. Francis asked to taste Lady Jacoba’s almond cookies one last time. Serving almond cookies on St. Francis’ death anniversary has become a tradition.
Following the Parent/Teacher conferences, the Franciscan Sisters celebrated the Transitus to commemorate St. Francis’ death and new life in heaven.
On the Feast of St. Francis, the Sisters began their day with a festive Morning Praise together. The central celebration of their day was the Eucharist. Sister Elizabeth Ann and Sister Elizabeth attended the 7:15 a.m. Mass. Sister Barbara and Sister Joy attended an 11:00 a.m. Mass at St. Francis hospital. The Sisters gathered to celebrate a special Evening Praise at 5:oo p.m. Sister Joy prepared a delicious steak dinner for everyone to enjoy on the Feast of St. Francis.
Sister Barbara is a master at crocheting doilies. She can create a single doily in three days to a week. Sister Barbara has made eleven doilies between August 10 and October 7! Each doily has its own beauty and elegance. One of Sister Barbara’s doilies will be in the St. Mary’s Family Fun Day auction on November 6th.
Sister Barbara’s mother taught her how to crochet when she was a child. This skill has served her well over the years. The recipients of Sister’s doilies have a beautiful treasure that will endure for years to come.
Sister Barbara Mathe and Sister Renee Mirkes are natives of Oshkosh, Wisconsin. Who would ever image two Sisters from the same city would be ministering in Nebraska! Sister Barbara is a volunteer at Guardian Angels Central Catholic School, St. Joseph Retirement Center and St. Francis Hospital. Sister Renee Mirkes ministers as a Bio-ethicist at the Pope Paul VI Institute in Omaha, Nebraska.
Each month, Sister Renee travels to West Point, Nebraska where she enjoys a delicious meal followed by a community meeting with her Franciscan Sisters. The elegant salad pictured in this video was prepared by Sister Renee. The Sisters look forward to their monthly sharing of food, conversation and a lively discussion.
The Franciscan Sisters from West Point traveled to Manitowoc, Wisconsin over Labor Day weekend. They decided to spend their Community Days taking a trip to visit Sister Sarah Bertler and the Sisters at their Motherhouse. During these Community Days, the Sisters took time to enjoy outings, prayer time and relaxing together. They stopped at a Cracker Barrel for a brunch on the way to Wisconsin. The sights along the way displayed the wonder and awe of God!
On August 3rd , Sisters Elizabeth Ann Miller, Barbara Mathe and Elizabeth Benvie stopped at the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe Shrine in La Crosse, Wisconsin on the way to West Point, Nebraska. The flowers and statues along the way to the shrine were breathtaking to behold.
Although this shrine isn’t as immense as the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Mexico City, it is a lovely tribute to Our Lady. One of the statues on the campus of the shrine is Our Blessed Mother cradling newborn children in her arms. During this Respect for Life Month this statue reminds us of the preciousness of human life.
The visit to this shrine remains one of the highlights of the Sisters’ trip from Manitowoc, Wisconsin to West Point, Nebraska.
Franciscan Sisters L-R front row: Sister Barbara Mathe, Sister Elizabeth Benvie L-R back row: Sister Elizabeth Ann Miller, Sister Joy Rose
Sister Barbara Mathe is new to West Point this year. The Franciscan Sisters are very happy to welcome Sister Barbara to her new home at 532 East Walnut Street. She will be a volunteer at Guardian Angels School, St. Joseph Retirement Center and St. Francis Hospital. Sister Elizabeth Ann Miller and Sister Elizabeth Benvie are returning for their second year as teachers at Guardian Angels Central Catholic School. Sister Joy Rose is returning as Director of Mission for Franciscan Care Services.