The Federation of Saint Scholastica, comprised of 20 Monasteries of Benedictine Women, was established on February 25, 1922.
On the evening of June 15, 2017, delegations from the member monasteries of the Federation of St. Scholastica opened their meetings with Evening Prayer and an brief inpirational address by Sister Lynn Marie McKenzie, Federation President. The theme of the gathering was "Facing Forward with Hope." On Friday morning Sister Edith Bogue, OSB from Duluth, MN began a series of presentations to stir ideas and conversations that would eventually determine the content for the Chapter gathering in 2018. Sister Kathy McNany of Baltimore, MD gave a presentation to stir ideas for celebrating the centennial of the federation in 2022 and celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Renewal Chapters of 1968 and 1969 that followed the Second Vatican Council. Sister Rita Brink of Covington, KY and administrator of St. Joseph Monastery in St. Marys, PA gave a report on the Interfederation Heritage Project, which is working to preserve the archives, artifacts, and the history of the first foundation of Benedictine women in North America. Sister Anne Wambach of Erie, PA gave a detailed financial report to the assembly.
Sister Therese Haydel, federation webmaster, gave a brief demonstration of the changes that have been to the federation website over the previous year. New ideas for additions and future developments were offered from the floor.
Participants who were interested in planning for the federation's centennial met with Sister Kathy McNany.
The Pre-Chapter gathering concluded with a very nice celebratory meal prepared and served by the Saint Leo University culinary staff.
After prayerful deliberation, the Benedictine Sisters of Mount St. Scholastica, Atchison, Kansas, have elected Sister Esther Fangman as the twelfth prioress in their 153-year history. Sister Esther is a native of Seneca, Kansas, where she was educated by Benedictine sisters at St. Mary’s parish in St. Benedict, Kansas. She received a doctorate in counseling from Idaho State University and has used it in a number of counseling settings. Currently, she is in private practice serving clients in the Kansas City area. She was also president of the Federation of St. Scholastica, a federation of Benedictine monasteries, from 1998 to 2010.
She follows Sister Anne Shepard, who has served the community as prioress for the past twelve years. Sister Anne praised the community’s choice saying, “Having lived and served with Sister Esther in Kansas City as well as Atchison, I find her to be a woman of faith, compassion and competency. Our community will be blessed with her as our new prioress.”
Election Discernment was facilitated by Sisters Kathryn Huber of Ferninand, IN and Aileen Bankemper of Covington, KY. The election was presided over by Sister Lynn Marie McKenzie, Federation President.
During the Annual Commencement Exercises of Donnelly College on May 13, 2017, Sister Anne Shepard, Prioress of the Benedictine Sisters of Mount St. Scholastica in Atchison, KS, was announced as the 2017 Delta Award recipient for her significant contribution to the ideals and philosophy for which the college stands. In her 12 years as Prioress she also served on the Board of Directors for Donnelly College. Donnelly College was established in 1949 as a combined effort of the Benedictine Sisters of Mount St. Scholastica and the Diocese of Kansas City with the Sisters providing faculty and the diocese the location for classrooms. Currently, Donnelly College is only one of ten diocesan colleges in the United States.
The 10th Annual Oblate Institute will be held at Sophia Center in Atchison, KS July 20nd to 23rd. Oblates from all Benedictine houses are invited to attend. The main speaker will be Fr. Meinrad Miller, OSB of St. Benedict's Abbey in Atchison, KS, and his theme will be "Steps to Good Living." To view and download the flyer click below.
The Benedictine Sisters of St. Gertrude Monastery in Ridglely, MD elected Sister Catherine Godfrey as Prioress on Saturday May, 13, 2017. Her installation will be on July 8, 2017. Sister Jacquelyn Ernster of Yankton, SD served as Administrator for the Sisters in Ridgley for just over three years. The elections discernment was led by Sister Mary Catherine Wenstrup, Prioress of St. Walburg Monastery in Covington, KY. Sister Lynn Marie McKenzie, Federation President, presided over the election. The Sisters serving on the election committee were Sisters Eleanor Murray, Marlies Tomczyk, and Marie Becker. For the election, Sister Mary Agnes Dugan was the secretary and Sisters Vincent Schroeder and Margaret Mary Graney were the tellers.
Sister Belinda Monahan of the Benedictine Sisters of Chicago was recently elected to the Boad of the National Religious Vocation Conference (NRVC). Follow this link to view the NRVC web posting of the Current board members.
On April 30, 2017 the Sisters at Benet Hill Monastery in Colorado Springs, CO re-relected Sister Clare Carr to a second term as prioress. Sister Mary Catherine Wenstrup, the prioress of St. Walburg Monastery in Covington, KY, was the discernment facilitator and the election was presided over by Sister Lynn Marie McKenzie, Federation President. Sister Mary John Thomas and Sister Therese O'Grady were the tellers for the election and Sister Evangeline Salazar was the election secretary. Serving on the election committee were Sisters Naomi, Anne, Marilyn (chair), Lucile and Ann Madeline.
As the Benedictine abbots gathered in Rome to elect a new Abbot Primate, the Benedictine Sisters and Nuns attending the Communio Internationalis Benedictinarum (CIB) were invited observers. Pope Francis greeted the gathering on September 8th but also chose to greet the participats individually. Sister Lynn Marie comments about the experience on her Facebook posting:"This is the highlight of my meetings in Rome!...The Holy Father is everything you have heard about him: Joy-filled, kind, humble, a lovely man."
The Benedictine Sisters of Florida re-elected Sister Roberta Baily as prioress the weekend of May 20-22, 2016. The Discernment Facilitator was Sister Bernadine Reyes, the prioress of St. Scholastica Monastery in Boerne, TX. Sister Lynn Marie McKenzie, President of the Federation of St. Scholastica, presided over the Canonical Election ritual.
Pittsburgh Benedictine Sisters Sue Fazzini and Audrey Quinn are acknowledges for their generous service to Greene County, PA through the Heart and Sole Shoe Drive, a ministry that has donated over 5,000 pairs of shoes since 1999. To learn more about this amazing ministry and these outstanding Sisters, follow this link.
Federation of St. Scholastica
916 Convent Rd NE,
Cullman, AL 35055