The Federation of Saint Scholastica, comprised of 20 Monasteries of Benedictine Women, was established on February 25, 1922.
Each delegation presented a symbol of a current critical juncture that it is facing and placed it at the focal point of the prayer room. The symbol of the burning bush, representing the presence of God in the midst of the critical moments of our lives, was a prominent theme throughout the Chapter gathering.
Sister Lynn Marie McKenzie, Federation President, addressed the gathering on Thursday evening, June 14th, offering words of encouragement to all of the monastic communities represented. Utilizing inspirational words from a variety of writers, Sister Lynn emphasized that the experience of death and dying is integrally part of the experience of resurrection and ascension, i.e. the entirety of the Paschal Mystery. Facing critical junctures with hope is the call of all Christian disciples. It gives witness to the ceaseless confidence of Jesus Christ who also cried out from the cross, "My God, my God, why have you abandoned me?" Remaining faithful to the work of God unfolding through us in our time is a process of letting go of whatever ideas about our ourselves, our communities, and monastic life in general that may be inhibiting us from becoming the new creation God envisions for us. She reminded the gathering that we are all in this together and that love and prayerful support of one another throughout the process is the way forward.
Over the weekend, various committee reports were given and the process of creating direction statements for the next four years began. Once the statements were agreed upon, the process of election began. Sister Lynn Marie McKenzie was re-elected to serve as Federation President for the next four years. Sister Elaine Fischer of Atchison, KS was elected as 1st Councilor. Other elected members of the new Federation Council are Sisters Christine Ereiser (Tulsa, OK Prioress), Maricarmen Bracamontes (Torreon, Mexico Prioress), Anne Wambach (Erie, PA Prioress) and Kimberly Porter (Covington, KY).
In a letter dated April 2, 2018, Sister Lynn Marie McKenzie, as President of the Federation of St. Scholastica, asks that His Holiness Pope Francis favorably consider the Postulation of St. Gertrude the Great as a Doctor of the Church. To read her letter and learn more about the Postulation, click on the file below.
On Saturday, April 7, 2018, the Sisters of St. Walburg Monastery in Covington, KY elected Sister Aileen Bankemper to serve as their new prioress for the next four years. The outgoing prioress, Sister Mary Catherine Wenstrup has served the community as prioress since 2006. Sisters Susan Quaintance (Chicago) and Elaine Fischer (Atchison) were the election discernment facilitators, and Sister Lynn Marie McKenzie, Federation President, presided over the election.
March 21, 2018
Wishing you every grace and happiness on this feast of our Holy Father Benedict. May we always run on the path of God’s commandments, our hearts overflowing with the inexpressible delight of love. (RB Prol. 49) And may God bring us all together to everlasting life! (RB 72:12)
Let us hold each other in prayer as we continue to seek God in the school of the Lord’s service, asking God to keep us faithful.
With love and prayers for your good,
The 11th Annual Oblate Institute held at the Sophia Spirituality Center in Atchison, KS is scheduled for July 12-15, 2018. The theme of the Institute is "Being Fully Alive: What The Rule of St. Benedict Teaches Us About Happiness, Meaning and Community." Judith Valente, Oblate of Mount St. Scholastica Monastery, will be the main presenter. She has authored four books on spirituality, is an award-winning journalist and a poet. The brochure for the event, which contains more detailed information and a registration form, may be downloaded below.
The following story ran on the website GoErie.com on February 28, 2018: "Five representatives from the Erie Benedictines for Peace were among about 40 Catholic nuns and leaders who were arrested Tuesday in Washington, D.C. at a rally calling for immigration reform." To read more of this story, follow this link.
The Winter 2018 NAABOD Newsletter is now available via the link below. In the section on the World Congress presentations, you can click on the links access tm.
The Conference of Benedictine Prioresses gathered for its annual assembly in Cullman, AL at the Benedictine Sisters Retreat Center from Feb 1-7, 2018. As always it was a great opportunity for the CBP members to share with one another and encourage one another in the ministry of leading monasteries. It wasn’t all work – at the end of the week together, there was a grand Mardi Gras celebration including Cajun food and a Dixieland jazz band providing great entertainment and an opportunity for dancing and fun.”
The Federation of St. Scholastica gives thanks for the life, leadership and service of Sister Johnette Putnam. May she be rejoicing in heaven.
Thank you, Johnette!
The following obituary and photo are from the Mt. St. Scholastica website (www.mountosb.org)
June 2, 1933 - February 4, 2018
Sister Johnette Putnam, OSB, 84, a Benedictine sister of Mount St. Scholastica, Atchison, Kans., died Sunday, February 4, 2018, at the monastery. The vigil service will be Thursday, February 8, at 7:00 p.m. in the monastery chapel and the Mass of Resurrection will be celebrated there Friday, February 9, at 10:30 a.m.
Born in New Orleans, La., Sister Johnette was a member of St. Scholastica Priory in Covington, La., until it closed in 1988 and she transferred to Mount St. Scholastica in Atchison. She taught in grade schools in Louisiana and was a principal for several years. From 1958 to 1968, she taught at St. Joseph High School in Chauvin, La., and St. Scholastica Academy in Covington, La. She held a B.A. in English from Mount St. Scholastica College, M.A. in theology from St. John's University in Collegeville, Minn., and an honorary doctorate from Mount Marty College in Yankton, S.D. In 1968, she was elected prioress in Covington and in 1978 became president of the Federation of St. Scholastica, an organization of Benedictine monasteries. She held this position for 12 years and then was a retreat director at Sacred Heart Monastery in Cullman, Ala., before moving to Atchison. There she served as director of Sophia Center from 1992 to 2003 and helped launch Souljourners, an ecumenical program for training spiritual directors at Sophia Center. She wrote many articles and gave lectures and workshops on monastic life, community leadership, liturgy, and spirituality.
Sister Johnette was preceded in death by her parents Gorham and Georgiana Serpas Putnam, by her brothers Charles, Joseph and S. Jerome, and a sister, Emilie Nicaud. She is survived by her twin brother John (Dot) of Tierra Verde, Fla., nieces and nephews, and her monastic family. Arensberg Pruett Funeral Home (www.arensbergpruett.com) is in charge of arrangements. Memorials may be sent to Mount St. Scholastica or made online at the Mount's web site (www.mountosb.org).
Our Lenten Reflections on Fasting and Feasting will begin on Ash Wednesday and continue each Wednesday in Lent, offering suggestions for prayer, reflection and intentional action.
Emmanuel Monastery, Lutherville, MD
St. Benedict Monastery, Bristow, VA
St. Gertrude Monastery, Ridgely, MD
Freelance writer Olivia Overman contributed an article to the Prince William Living magazine/website noting the 150th anniversary of the community's founding. To see the article, click here.
On Sunday, October 15th, Sister Barbara Austin of Tulsa, OK was installed as the Administrator for the Benedictine Sisters at Queen of Angels Monastery in Liberty, MO. Sister Barbara received a blessing from Sister Lynn Marie McKenzie, Federation President, as well as from each member of the Liberty community.
Federation of St. Scholastica
916 Convent Rd NE,
Cullman, AL 35055
CIB Resources- Bulletins