Sister Pat Lupo

Sister Pat Lupo

Jubilee is a special and memorable time because it brings us together to celebrate life—a time to bring friends together—a time to recognize the breadth of religious life and its impact on the world, in our case as Benedictines, for over 1,500 years.

I am very grateful for the support of my religious community over the years. It was my Benedictine community that introduced an eighteen-year-old young woman to the age-old Benedictine concept, “Listen with the ear of your Heart.” They challenged me to join the covenant people and to promote and model sacred actions: actions that spring from our faith traditions and from the Book of Creation. This Benedictine community enabled both my environmental and Central American ministries. I am the woman that I am today because of my many Benedictine mentors.

Abba Lot went to see Abba Joseph and said, “Abba, as much as I am able, I practice a small rule, all the little fasts, some prayer and meditation, and remain quiet. As much as possible I keep my thoughts clean. What else should I do?” Then the old man stood up and stretched out his hands towards heaven and his fingers became like the torches of flames. And he said, “Why not be turned into fire?”

Indeed—why not be turned into fire? And so, my passion for the environment and for my work in Central America, especially El Salvador, has led me down many wonderful and hard roads and has also opened the doors to wonderful opportunities and lifelong friends and life-changing encounters.

Thomas Berry talks about the Great Work—we each have a Great Work to be about; each day we are called upon to act. Will our actions be sacred actions? Are we able to surrender to the story that is unfolding around us and to embrace the mystery and be a positive force in our communities, our neighborhoods, our world? “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed it is the only thing that ever has,” said Margaret Mead. Together we can make a difference; we have the power to heal our communities, to heal the planet. We must embrace our story and be about the Great Work.

Sister Pat Lupo has taught at the elementary, secondary and college levels, mainly in the area of science and environmental education. She led environmental programs at Glinodo Center and EarthForce, later Earth Action. She has served on local, regional and international environmental boards and received a number of awards for her environmental work. Sister Pat is involved in Central America outreach and has taken part in a number of accompaniment projects. Her present ministry is teaching at the Inner-city Neighborhood Art House.