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After the Silent Peace Walk in Perry Square, stay for a special screening of the documentary, "Farming While Black." Before the film meet local growers, participate in educational activities, savor tasting plates of local soul food, and hear about all the new farmers' markets in our city. Don’t miss this unique opportunity to learn, connect, and experience the richness of our community! Event is 7:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. in Perry Square. Benedictines for Peace is a co-sponsor of this event.

This Wednesday, June 19, 6:30 pm in Perry Square (west side of State Street). The focus is Juneteenth Celebration and message.

With Fr. Jim Piszker as presenter, sisters and oblates gathered for the 2024 Community Retreat, "Looking Inward and Outward" earlier in June. Fr. Jim, who had been a regular Sunday celebrant at the monastery until being named pastor at Holy Rosary Parish, offered reflections that challenged participants on multiple levels and at the same time inviting them to growth both personal and communal. During the retreat silence was observed in the monastery except at the evening meal. The week concluded with a desert day which offered additional time to integrate new reflections.

Joan Chittister was interviewed earlier this month as part of a forthcoming documentary film that is being produced by the former president of PBS-NY, Dr. Bill Baker. The film is titled Wisdom Keepers and will feature Sister Joan along with other religious leaders and wisdom figures, and may be released next year. Sister Joan was recorded in the chapel at Mount Saint Benedict Monastery.

Mother Klara and Sister Maria, two Benedictine sisters from Zhytomyr Abbey, Ukraine, visited Erie and the offices of the Alliance for International Monasticism, U.S. Secretariat (AIM USA) specifically to give thanks to generous donors. They also visited Mount Saint Benedict Monastery to share with the sisters the current reality of living in war-torn Ukraine. AIM USA and the Zhytomyr sisters have been connected since the war began, with AIM USA helping to collect funds from its network of monasteries to send directly to the sisters in Ukraine for their efforts of supporting refugees and ministering to the suffering there. The sisters were in the U.S. with their translator, Abbot Marion, to visit some of the communities that around the country that have been supporting them. It was the end of May when they arrived in Erie

In a new op-ed, Sister Val Luckey describes Sister Mary Miller's 'Way' after a city street was named Sister Mary Miller Way in her honor.

Rabbi William G. Hamilton, pictured with Sue and Bernie Pucker, delivered the fourth annual Art and Spirituality lecture at the monastery on May 22. He spoke on, "Doing The Impossible: The Art of bringing Spiritual Goods to Life." View the video of his presentation here.

A Eucharistic Revival is underway in the United States Catholic Church, with congresses, processions, pilgrimages, holy hours, and more. This is “a movement to restore understanding of and devotion to” Jesus in the Eucharist, according to the National Eucharistic Revival website. These are fine actions taking place around the country. Our Laudato Sí Platform Committee has a suggestion to offer: A conversation between Eucharist and Laudato Sí.

Sister Jacqueline Sanchez-Small's essay, "A Faithful and Fruitful Obedience: Mary Lou Kownacki, OSB" appears in the 2024 Spring/Summer issue of Benedictines magazine. Below are a few paragraphs from the piece that captures Sister Mary Lou's spirit. Contact Jennifer Halling, OSB, to subscribe to Benedictines: jennifer@mountosb.org.

An interview with playwright Jenn Bokoch Gillett and director Ashley Thaxton-Stevenson 
The new interview-based play Where Hope Is: Stories of Benedictine Influence will debut in Erie on June 30. It reflects a snapshot-in-time – 1960s to 1980s – of the influence of the Benedictine Sisters of Erie and is created from a dozen conversations selected from more than 60 interviews Jenn conducted with St. Benedict Academy (SBA) alumnae, Benedictine sisters, and others. The story is one of spirituality, community, and steadfastness in facing questions of meaning, faith, and gospel accountability. It’s a story of prophetic voices and compassionate commitment to those denied a place at any table. It’s a poignant—and sometimes humorous—women’s story of ongoing potential for new generations seeking connection and meaning today. Sister Linda Romey’s interview with New York-based artists Jenn and Ashley follows.

Please join us in prayer for homicide victim Deonte Tate, Sr., on Tuesday, May 28, 5:15 p.m., 700 block of West 4th Street, between Poplar and Liberty Streets, Erie, the site where he was murdered on May 7.

God's Tender Mercy Zoom Retreat on June 27 at Monasteries of the Heart. We invite you to join other members of Monasteries of the Heart in a retreat experience to explore together the idea of tender mercy and our call to mirror God’s tender mercy in the way of light and love that might lift this world.

Larisa Melodinskaia, a former professional ballroom dancer and dance instructor at the Inner-city Neighborhood Art House since 1998, is sharing moves she teaches children in Art House classes with sisters at the monastery. She is leading a weekly movement and exercise class in May and June.

Sister Valerie Luckey, Director of Emmaus Ministries, received the Distinguished Alumni Award from her alma mater, Saint Joseph's University in Philadelphia, on May 15. "It’s an honor to receive the Distinguished Alumni Award from Saint Joseph’s University.

In honor of her years of dedication serving the Erie Community, the SONS of Lake Erie sponsored a resolution, passed by Erie City Council, dedicating East 11th Street between German and Holland Streets in Erie, Sister Mary Miller Way. A dedication ceremony was held on Monday, May 13, on the corner of East 11th and Holland.

Rabbi William G. Hamilton will deliver the fourth annual Art and Spirituality lecture at the monastery on Wednesday, May 22, at 7:30 p.m. Rabbi Hamilton will speak on, "Doing The Impossible: The Art of bringing Spiritual Goods to Life." The 2024 lecture by Rabbi Hamilton is free and open to the public.

Everyday Sacred, Everywhere Beauty: Readings From An Old Monks Journal, a new collection of Sister Mary Lou Kownacki's blog posts will be released in September. In hundreds of personal blog posts at Monasteries of the Heart she chronicled current events, reflections on her decades as a nun, stories of friends, poetry recommendations and profound insights on life’s purpose and mortality, including her own journey to her death from cancer on January 6, 2023.

When Erie Benedictine Sister Marian Wehler and Mercy Sister Tina Geiger, who minister together in Catholic Rural Ministry, presented a Tanzanian village’s need for “Life-Saving Water” to students in Lucinda, Clarion, and Oil City Catholic Schools during Lent last year, the students were eager to help. In a few weeks they collected over $1,250 for the villagers and this was matched by adults donations. Soon more donations poured in until more than $7,000 was raised for the “Life-Saving Water” by October 2023 when the project was to begin. Sister Marian lived and taught at a Catholic high school in Tanzania for seven years and has visited different countries in Africa on multiple occasions and so knows first-had of the need.

Sarah Joy Gaines, the first 2024 Joan Chittister Writer-in-Residence, spent the month of April living at the monastery and working on a proposal for a book about reclaiming the sacredness of the body. The proposal is also the culmination of her work on a Master's in Women, Gender, Spirituality, and Social Justice. “The book is the product of my graduate studies, inspired by my decade of experience in the wellness industry and my journey of healing my relationship with my body. We live in a world that teaches us to focus on how our bodies look — that our physical appearance is what gives us value. Along the way, we lose sight of the power and wisdom of our bodies. We forget that the body is divine itself. The book intends to guide people to reconnect with that sacred essence, innate within us all,” she said.

Monastic Formation Director Sister Ann Muczynski attended the North American Benedictine Vocation Formation Conference (NABVFC) Symposium in Schuyler, Nebraska, in April. She was one of twenty-seven Benedictine sisters in attendance. Sister Ann (far right) was elected Vice Chair of the Core Team 2024-2028. She will work with the other five sisters on the core team planning the future of NABVFC programs including the Novice and Director Institute and the Benedictine Sisters Workshop and Retreat. There are fewer sisters in initial monastic formation and therefore these kinds of programs directed toward new members will require creative revising.

Gannon Day of Caring Students, all members of the Gannon Women’s Soccer Team, offered their services for several initiatives of the Care for the Earth Committee in April.

The community blessed Sharon McSweeney as she completed 14 months in the Benedicta Riepp Monastic Experience Program and prepared to return home taking with her the love of her Benedictine sisters and a Benedictine perspective on life. "Being surrounded by like-minded women has been the most treasured part of my being here," she said.

Consumerism is so prevalent in our lives that sometimes we do not realize how this is shaping our actions and world. By focusing on three areas of enormous consumption we may become more mindful and re-evaluate our daily purchases namely, the use of single use plastics, fashion/clothing, and home décor.
Single use plastic bombards our everyday purchases, groceries, food packaging, and water bottles to name a few. Water bottles are rarely recycled and some scientists question if recycling can even happen, or even work. Plastic is not biodegradable, and it does not decompose. Since World War II, 8.3 billion metric tons of plastic has been produced. Currently we have 150 million metric tons of plastic in our oceans; it is predicted that by 2050, we will have more plastic than fish in the oceans.

Read Sister Joan Chittister's new NCRonline column, a tribute to Bishop Thomas Gumbleton, pictured here in Erie at the 1983 Good Friday Peace Pilgrimage.

Benedictines for Peace and the Care for the Earth Committee sponsored an Earth Day Observance at the monastery titled Healing Our Throwaway Culture: Focus on Plastics. The program was borrowed from Catholic Climate Covenant and the resources shared are available here.

Please join us at the monastery for a celebration of Earth Day on Sunday, April 21, from 10:45 a.m. - 11:45 a.m. (after Liturgy). We will gather in the Garden Room. The celebration is sponsored by Benedictines for Peace and the community's Care for the Earth committee. Everyone is welcome.

Sister Pat Lupo, long-time, award-winning advocate for the environment was honored as a Freshwater Hero in a virtual ceremony on April 10. Freshwater Voices recognized ten Heroes this year who "have dedicated their lives to making a difference and are paving the way for meaningful, lasting change in our Great Lakes region. Their commitment to protecting our communities and water resources is nothing short of inspiring, with many of this year’s heroes spending years, if not decades, tackling the complex issues that impact our region.

Communications staff Linda, Heather, Michelle, and Michelle take a break from solar eclipse event preparations to model eclipse glasses in front of the Benedictine Blackout photo booth background at Glinodo. Complete information on Benedictine events is available here. Tickets for the post-eclipse celebration are available until 4 p.m. Friday April 5. The Monday morning retreat is sold out. Parking at Glinodo is on a first come beginning at 9:00 a.m. on Monday April 8. Activities for children begin at 11:00 a.m. Enjoy our beautiful grounds while you wait for the eclipse.

Marisa Thomas, Erie News Now, speaks with Sister Linda Romey and Michelle Scully about events planned by the Benedictine Sisters that will welcome guests into their monastery and onto their grounds on April 8 for the solar eclipse.

You may have heard us say at some point in our relationship with you that as Benedictine monastics, our primary ministry is prayer and community. St. Benedict didn’t name a singular good work that would define his monastic communities. Rather, he built those communities around a Rule that is a simple guide for living a balanced and healthy life with each other, with oneself, and with God.

Over the course of our first 50 years, staff and volunteers at Emmaus Ministries have told anyone who asked about our name that it comes from a story found in the Gospel of Luke, a story called "The Road to Emmaus." The story takes place on the first Easter Sunday, and highlights two of Christ's disciples, who are walking sadly away from Jerusalem just as reports about an empty tomb are beginning to circulate.

Easter tells us that suffering and death are never the last word for our God is a God of surprises and nothing is impossible with God. Resurrection is not a one-time event in the past, but rather an ongoing process. We are called to rise and live more fully for Christ is within us. The power of Resurrection bursts forth in our lives in ordinary ways through the quality of our daily living and loving. May we reflect the joy and radiance of the Risen Jesus and give daily witness that he is ALIVE within us. Let us rejoice and be glad! Happy Easter! —Sister Stephanie Schmidt, Prioress

Sister Anne McCarthy received a 2024 Mercy Center for Women Women Making History award at the Mercyhurst University Performing Arts Center on Monday, March 25. Sister Anne's five sisters and one of her nieces, pictured here with her, along with many of her Benedictine sisters, joined her for the program and celebration.

In 1955 economist Victor Lebow wrote, “Our enormously productive economy demands that we make consumption our way of life, that we convert the buying and use of goods into rituals, that we seek our spiritual satisfactions, our ego satisfactions, in consumption.”

Join Benedictines for Peace on Friday, March 29 at 11 a.m. for the 44th annual Good Friday Pilgrimage for Peace, praying the Stations of the Cross as we process through the streets of downtown Erie.

Peacemaker, author, and Nobel Peace Prize nominee Father John Dear will be at the monastery on April 5 to talk about and sign copies of his new book, The Gospel of Peace: A Commentary on Matthew, Mark, and Luke from the Perspective of Nonviolence. It is the first commentary on the Synoptic Gospels from the perspective of active nonviolence in the tradition of Gandhi and Dr. King. In this original work, John walks us through the three synoptic Gospels highlighting Jesus' practice and teachings on nonviolence, peace, and universal love. Join us on Friday April 5, 7:00 p.m. at Mount Saint Benedict Monastery

Podcaster Sister Carolyn Gorny-Kopkowski often does interpretive scripture readings for liturgical celebrations at the monastery. Recently she did a creative reading of Matthew Chapter 8, Jesus heals a man with leprosy. Hearers were so moved by the reflection that Sister Carolyn recorded to share it more widely.

Four members of Erie's Horton family shared song and history with sisters and guests in the monastery chapel last month. The Benedictine sisters were privileged to host Cheryl Horton-Jong as Sojourner Truth, her sister Denise Horton, a member of the political action committee for NAACP, and sister Valerie Horton Brown, a singer who recently returned to the Erie area, and their brother Gary Horton.

Adam Baker talks with Sister Linda Romey and Michelle Scully about eclipse events at the monastery and Glinodo Center.

Join us this Thursday, March 21 from 4:00 to 5:00 p.m.
at the Federal Courthouse in Erie on South Park Row.

The Erie Benedictines recently hosted "Ministry Days" with the staff, volunteers, and board members of their ministries and good works, including staff at the monastery. "Creating community is a core value of Benedictine life and by gathering all those who minister with us for a day of sharing and learning, we are strengthening our Benedictine community,” said Michelle Scully, Program and Event Coordinator for the Benedictine Sisters.

On March 10, Benedictine Sister Marian Wehler (left) and Mercy Sister Tina Geiger of Catholic Rural Ministries in Oil City celebrated International Women’s Day along with their local YWCA’s 100th Anniversary team and Zonta International’s 100 years local members at Christ Episcopal Parish Center.

Members of the Benedictine Sisters Communications and Development team heard SBA alum Jennie Hagerty, '83, Executive Director of the Mercy Center for Women, deliver the keynote address at the Impact 2024 Women in Leadership Luncheon.

More than 20 persons, many of whom had never visited the monastery, joined us for a monastery tour, dinner, and a Lent vigil on Saturday, March 9. A few persons who have been to the monastery in the past also joined the group, opting for a formal tour and the explanations of Benedictine life were included. They, too, learned things they didn't know.

Pennsylvania Representative Bob Merski presented Erie's women religious with a proclamation in honor of Catholic Sisters Week at a press conference held at St. Mark Center in Erie. Representatives of the different communities of women religious working in the Diocese were present.

Register now for "The Women of Helfta: Stories from a Medieval Monastery." Friendships and rivalries–religious fervor and tensions with Church authorities–music, poetry, and visions: all in one small monastery...

The 2024 Women's History Month Art Show "Beauty Beholds..." is now open at Mount Saint Benedict Monastery. Visit the Chapter 57 Gallery and view this year's entries. The show runs until March 31 and includes works in various media by Benedictine sisters, oblates, co-workers, and friends.

The first Emmaus Companion newsletter of 2024 features artwork from the Emmaus archives to begin a year-long recognition of 50 years of service to Erie's hungry.

The Laudato Si Platform Committee offers one final goal: Goal 7 – Community resilience and empowerment. Words do inspire. When we say “community,” “resilience,” “empowerment,” — we stand a little taller, don’t we? We speak them with conviction.

The 2024 Women's History Month Art Show "Beauty Beholds..." opening is Sunday, March 3, 10:30 a.m. - noon at Mount Saint Benedict Monastery. Visit the Chapter 57 Gallery and view this year's entries while you enjoy coffee and monastery-baked sweet breads. The show runs from March 3 -31.

Sister Kath Horan, principal at Blessed Sacrament School, is featured in a GoErie news story.

Atchison Benedictine Sister Helen Mueting shares her reflection on St. Scholastica, whose feast day is February 10. The icon was written by Atchison Sister Paula Howard.

Sister Val Luckey shares her thoughts on 50 years of feeding the hungry at Emmaus ministries. Read her op ed at GoErie.com.

Sister Tina Geiger, RSM, and her ministry partner at Catholic Rural Ministries, Erie Benedictine Sister Marian Wehler, began Catholic Schools Week having lunch with students and family members at St. Stephen's in Oil City, preschool through sixth grade grade. They enjoyed lively conversation at the lunch tables and visited classrooms.

Toxic, toxicity, groans, and suffering. These are unusual words to begin a consideration of Goal 6, Ecological Spirituality.  Perhaps they are the most appropriate words as we reflect on this goal in the midst of our present reality.

The Erie Benedictines are grateful to our neighbors down the street, East Erie Moose Family Center #593, for their generous donation to Mount Saint Benedict Monastery and the Benedictine Sisters' Benetwood Apartments.

Sister Cecilia Sullivan, OSB, 91, died on Thursday, January 25, 2024, at Mount Saint Benedict Monastery in Erie, Pennsylvania.

Read prayer and obituary>>>

The Benedictine Sisters congratulate Sister Anne McCarthy on being one of the women being recognized this year at the Mercy Center for Women's Women Making History event on Monday, March 25, at the Mercyhurst University Performing Arts Center in Erie.

Sister Margaret Zeller, 81, died on January 22, 2024, at Mount Saint Benedict Monastery in Erie, Pennsylvania.

Read prayer and obituary>>>

Sister Mary Grace Hanes, 96, died on January 21, 2024, at Mount Saint Benedict Monastery in Erie, Pennsylvania.

Read prayer and obituary>>>

Today, with Christians around the world, we begin the celebration of the week for Christian Unity. The theme of this year’s observance is the story of the Good Samaritan, taken from the first chapter of the Gospel of Luke. The story reflects the connection between love of God and love of neighbor with a particular concern for challenging the boundaries of who is considered "neighbor". In the dialogue with Jesus that unfolds this week, Jesus calls us not to only observe the commandments, but to also imitate the love of God in the giving of self for another. It is a call for charity, mercy, justice, and unity.

On January 9, 1974, the Benedictine Sisters served the first meal at Emmaus Soup Kitchen. It included soup, peanut butter, and bread. Fifty years later, there are still hungry people in Erie and Emmaus Soup Kitchen continues to serve hot meals.

Sister Mary Louis Eichenlaub, 93, died on January 8, 2024, at Mount Saint Benedict Monastery in Erie, Pennsylvania.

Read prayer and obituary>>>

Morning prayer on the Feast of the Epiphany follows a community procession through the monastery recalling the journey of the three Magi to find the Christ child. We stop in all our common spaces to pray and sing a blessing, beginning with the health care wing and proceeding to the front foyer, the community and dining rooms, and ending in the chapel. At the entrance to each space, we mark the doors with the current year and the inscription CBM: 20+C+B+M+24. The initials stand for the names of the magi: Caspar, Melchior and Balthasar. The letters also represent the Latin phrase, Christus mansionem benedicat which means “May Christ bless this home.” The marking remains throughout the year and serves as a reminder that this monastery is a blessed space and that its residents ask God's blessing on all who share it with us.

Sister Mary Lou Kownacki is the Blessed Among Us remembrance for January 6 in Give Us This Day daily prayer booklet published by Liturgical Press. Robert Ellsberg is the author.

Laudato Sí is a momentous document issued by Pope Francis on climate change. The Laudato Sí Platform Committee presented seven goals for people around the globe to focus on as one way to keep its message before us.

Joe Askins, President of Auto Express Mazda, and and JET/FOX/YourErie named the Benedictine Sisters of Erie their nonprofit of the week on Dec. 27. Sister Stephanie Schmidt, prioress, accepted the "Loving Giving Local" gift of $250 noting that the funds will go towards the sisters' support of families in need.

A local Monasteries of the Heart group from Warren, PA, gathered at Mount Saint Benedict Monastery. Monasteries of the Heart is an online monastery that is a ministry of the Benedictine Sisters of Erie. You can learn more here.

More than 40 guests, many of them on their first visit to Mount Saint Benedict Monastery, took part in a tour of the monastery followed by supper with the sisters, time to visit the monastery gift shop, and participation in the Vigil for the third Sunday of Advent on December 16.

Two current but related issues involving the Erie Public Library aren’t just about dollars and cents. These issues actually expose social justice inequities and make a mockery of government priorities.

For our friends who live in or near Erie, if you're at the Millcreek Mall between December 15 and 31, please stop by "Gingerbread Lane" and vote for our Gingerbread House, lovingly crafted by Sister Marcia Sigler.

The SBA Class of 1977 celebrated their 45th class reunion earlier this year at Calamari’s Restaurant in Erie. Pictured are: back row—Christine McCloskey Eacho, Clare Luddy, Lori Bush DiPlacido, Bernie Bagniszewski, Diane Kowalik Lugin, Linda Lubiejewski Turner and Rene Filipowski

I am a tad old-fashioned when it comes to calendars. Every autumn I buy a neat, clean, spiral-bound calendar for the coming year. I resist using the electronic calendar that, I’m told, would quickly sync my daily schedule between phone and computer. Referring to my paper calendar is one less occasion to be distracted by the barrage of buy, subscribe, click, like, and share messages that endlessly pop up on my screens. Those messages can easily divert us from what it means to be truly human, to love God, and to live well with others and our earth.

Please join us in prayer for Deborah Walker and Rani, two women who died in 2023 in murder/suicide events. Neither woman had obituaries published or any public services. One of the women was never identified by name. We are including both of them in this vigil on Monday, December 18 at 5:15 p.m., at 1417 East 28th Street in Erie.

The #iGiveCatholic 2023 results are in! The Benedictine Sisters of Erie raised a total $13,300 from 72 individuals, including two cash prizes sponsored by the Catholic Foundation of Northwest Pennsylvania totaling $1,250.

Sunday, December 17, 7 - 7:30 p.m. in Perry Square (West side) Special intention is for Peace on Earth.

Please join us in prayer for homicide victim Jeffrey Johnson on Monday, December 11, 5:15 p.m., corner of East 17th and State Streets, Erie, the site where he was murdered on September 22.

The SBA Class of 1977 celebrated their 45th class reunion earlier this year at Calamari’s Restaurant in Erie. Pictured are: back row—Christine McCloskey Eacho, Clare Luddy, Lori Bush DiPlacido, Bernie Bagniszewski, Diane Kowalik Lugin, Linda Lubiejewski Turner and Rene Filipowski

Please join us in the monastery chapel for Advent Vigils each Saturday during Advent, December 2, 9, 16, and 23 at 7:00 p.m. Reflections will be offered by Week One, Dec. 2: Sister Therese Glass 

The AIM USA (United States Secretariat of the Alliance for International Monasticism) newsletter is available online, download it here.

The Benedictine Sisters are offering two reflective, interactive times of Advent Lectio that will invite participants to consider new doors that might be waiting to be opened.

I like wordplay and books, so I keep my eye out for clever names, including titles of cozy mysteries (Buried in the Stacks, by Allison Brook) and book/gift shops (the Bayfront Bookshelf run by Friends of the Library at Blasco, for example). But I didn't know why the gift shop at Mount St. Benedict (6101 East Lake Road) is called Chapter 57 until Sister Valerie Luckey, OSB, director of Emmaus Ministries, explained its origin. (I am also a freelance writer for Emmaus.)

A Take Back the Site Vigil for Autumn Christine Bassham, Monday, November 20, 5:15 p.m. at the site where she was murdered on September 19. The vigil will take place at 1144 East 28th Street, Erie.

About fifty people walked in a silent prayer for a ceasefire in Israel-Hamas War on Wednesday evening. Sister Anne McCarthy is interviewed in this YourErie news clip.

Mary Novak, Executive Director of NETWORK Lobby for Catholic Social Justice, provided insight and challenge as the featured presenter at the annual Benedictine Community Weekend the end of October. In addition to Mary's presentations, more than 70 oblates gathered at Glinodo Center during the day on Friday to consider their vocation--a way of life that brings a Benedictine presence to the many places, organizations, and people they encounter each day--and to examine the ways in which they support the fundamentals of Benedictine life: prayer, community, and ministry.

The Winter 2023 issue of The Mount begins with The Visitation, a work of art by Laura James, and an observation from Sister Joan Chittister, "If God worked through one woman to bring redemption, how is it that anyone can argue that God does not go on working through other women as well?" An interview with Mary Novak, executive director of NETWORK Lobby for Catholic Social Justice, a reflection by guest columnist and journalist Liz Allen, and an excerpt from Sister Joan's recent global presentation on "Living the Discipleship of Equals" make the argument a moot point as God works through them. There is so much more for you, too, in this issue. May you find hope and inspiration in its pages.

November's Good Work invites members to read and reflect, in solitude and in shared reflection with others, on our role in empowering peace in our hearts, in our world and in our universe, especially in light of the threat to world peace that is building in the Holy Land and that continues to erupt in Ukraine.

Sister Carolyn reflects on creation reflected in the psalms in this podcast and offers the opportunity for personal reflection on your experiences of creation.

On the Feast of Saint Francis of Assisi, October 4, 2023, Pope Francis gave his most recent instruction: the Apostolic Exhortation Laudate Deum (Praise God), on the climate crisis.

Fire chief James Hawryliw and members of the Fairfield Hose Company Volunteer Fire Department and their spouses and children joined the sisters for the annual thank you dinner in the monastery dining room. "This is always one of our most anticipated events each year," said Chief Hawryliw. It's a long-standing tradition, a way for the sisters to express their gratitude to the Company for their many assists for ambulance services and the occasional fire alarm.

The Benedictine Sisters join the Erie Catholic School System in being pleased to announce that Sister Katherine Horan is taking on a new leadership role at Blessed Sacrament Campus in Erie.

Join us in the monastery chapel on Wednesday, October 18 at 7:00 p.m. for a Holy Hour for Peace in the Holy Land. Click to access a PDF flier.

Sister Jacqueline Sanchez-Small offers a different perspective on Matthew 22:1-14, the Wedding Banquet, in her homily on Sunday, October 15.

Sister Joan Chittister addressed a global audience at Spirit Unbounded: Human Rights in the Emerging Catholic Church, a lay-led synodal assembly that took place along side the Vatican Synod on Synodality October 8-14 with live presentations streaming from Rome October 13 and 14.

Listening Hearts, a grassroots program offering Benedictine spirituality to women in Erie challenged by poverty, launched its 2023-24 cohort at Mount Saint Benedict Monastery on October 11.

Sister Audrey Steff (right) offered the invocation at the ACES 2023 Awards Luncheon honoring Valerie Laufenberg as the Bob & Betty Merwin Outstanding Citizen.

The SBA Class of 1973 50th Reunion celebration included liturgy and coffee at Mount St. Benedict Monastery on October 8. Seventeen class members and three former faculty members, Sisters Dorothy Stoner, Phyllis Schleicher, and Rosanne Loneck, gathered for a photo in between the excited conversation and laughter.

Sister Pat Lupo's work with Hold Erie Coke Accountable (HECA) is featured in a new blog post in Penn Future: Our Water, Our Future Erie Newsletter.

Artisans of the monastery, according to St. Benedict in Chapter 57 of his Rule, are to share their craft with all humility. While trapping and relocating wild animals may not be a traditional craft when one thinks of artisans of the monastery, it is an art and a skill that Sister Jacinta Conklin brings to the community.

Sister Joan Chittister’s book The Time Is Now is included in a new mural on Erie’s East Bayfront Parkway, atop a stack of several other books. It's on a wall of Gallagher Plumbing on E. 9th St. but it is facing the Bayfront Highway.