The Federation of Saint Scholastica, comprised of 20 Monasteries of Benedictine Women, was established on February 25, 1922.

2018 Federation Chapter gathers in Cullman, AL

Group photo of Federation Chapter delegates and guest observers Group photo of Federation Chapter delegates and guest observers

 

The Federation Chapter began on the evening of June 13, 2018 with an opening prayer service introducing the theme "Facing Our Critical Junctures with Hope." 

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.

The Program Committee facilitated two days of presentations, activities and discussions focused on utilizing Benedictine "tools" and other "technologies" available for naming and facing the significant challenges currently impacting the monasteries of the federation.

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.

Table groups discuss information presented by the Program Committee Table groups discuss information presented by the Program Committee

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).

(l to r) Sisters Christine Ereiser, Maricarmen Bracamontes, Anne Wambach, Lynn Marie McKenzie, Kimberly Porter, and Elaine Fischer (l to r) Sisters Christine Ereiser, Maricarmen Bracamontes, Anne Wambach, Lynn Marie McKenzie, Kimberly Porter, and Elaine Fischer
Insert an image caption here. Evening socials were held in the Sisters' Dining Room of Sacred Heart Monastery Insert an alternative text here. Evening socials were held in the Sisters' Dining Room of Sacred Heart Monastery.
The closing banquet was held in the Benedictine Sisters Retreat Center Dining Room with an Italian themed menu and an environment inspired by St. Scholastica. The closing banquet was held in the Benedictine Sisters Retreat Center Dining Room with an Italian themed menu and an environment inspired by St. Scholastica.

Federation Council meets in Cullman

The president and the council of the Federation of St Scholastica met in April at Sacred Heart Monastery in Cullman which will be the location for the Federation Chapter meeting in June. Making final plans for the Chapter and several other items were on their agenda during their days together.

Support for St. Gertrude the Great to be named a Doctor of the Church

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.

St Gertrude the Great - Support of Postu[...]
Adobe Acrobat document [162.3 KB]

New Prioress Elected in Covington, KY

Sisters Elaine Fischer, Mary Catherine Wenstrup, Aileen Bankemper, Susan Quaintance, Lynn Marie McKenzie (l to r) Sisters Elaine Fischer, Mary Catherine Wenstrup, Aileen Bankemper, Susan Quaintance, Lynn Marie McKenzie

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. 

(l to r) Sisters Mary Carol Hellmann (teller), Lynn McKenzie (federation president), Margaret Mary Gough (teller) and Barbara Woeste (secretary) (l to r) Sisters Mary Carol Hellmann (teller), Lynn McKenzie (federation president), Margaret Mary Gough (teller) and Barbara Woeste (secretary)

Spring 2018 Gyrovagi now available

Gyrovagi cover Click on image to navigate to Gyrovagi page and download

Feast Day Greetings from the Federation President

March 21, 2018

Dear Sisters,

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,

Sister Lynn

11th Annual Oblate Institute Brochure Available

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.

11th Annual Oblate Institute Brochure
obInstit18.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [999.4 KB]

Frances Briseno Elected Prioress in Boerne

Sisters Bernadine Reyes, Prioress, and Frances Briseno, Prioress-Elect Sisters Bernadine Reyes, Prioress, and Frances Briseno, Prioress-Elect
 
On Friday, March 2, 2018 the Sisters of St Scholastica Monastery in Boerne TX elected Sister Frances Briseño as their next prioress to serve a 5 year term beginning with her installation on May 19, 2018.  Sister Mary Catherine Wenstrup, Prioress at Covington, KY, served as the Election Discernment Facilitator, and Sister Mariette Bernier of Elizabeth, NJ served as Assistant Discernment Facilitator. Sister Lynn Marie McKenzie presided over the election.
 
Please join them in thanksgiving for the guidance of the Spirit and for prayers for Frances and the community as they move forward into their future. 
(l to r) Sisters Lynn Marie, Frances Briseno, Mary Catherine Wenstrup, and Mariette Bernier

Erie Benedictines participate in DACA demonstration in Washington, D.C.

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.

NAABOD Newsletter Winter 2018 now available

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. 

NAABOD Newsletter February 2018.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [946.2 KB]

CBP meets in Cullman, AL

CBP 2018 Group Photo CBP 2018 Group Photo

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.”

Federation of St. Scholastica representatives at CBP with an adopted Missionary Benedictine Federation of St. Scholastica representatives at CBP with an adopted Missionary Benedictine

Gratitude for the life of Sister Johnette Putnam, OSB

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)

Sister Johnette Putnam, O.S.B. Sister Johnette Putnam, O.S.B.

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).

Eulogy for Sister Johnette Putman
Johnette Putnam.Eulogy by Jeanne d'Arc K[...]
Adobe Acrobat document [211.9 KB]
Funeral Homily for Sister Johnette Putnam
Johnette Putnam.funeral homily by Meinra[...]
Adobe Acrobat document [178.6 KB]

Tri-Community Lenten Reflections Available 

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.

 

Visit: https://www.3osbconnections.org/lenten-reflections

 

Emmanuel Monastery, Lutherville, MD

St. Benedict Monastery, Bristow, VA

St. Gertrude Monastery, Ridgely, MD

Bristow 150th Anniversary noted by Prince William Living 

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.

Tulsa Visitation held Nov. 16-19, 2017

(l to r) Sister Lynn Marie McKenzie, Sister Christine Ereiser, Prioress, and Sister Elizabeth Brown

Boerne Visitation held Nov. 9-12, 2017

(l to r): Sister Susan Quaintance (Chicago), Sister Bernadine Reyes, Prioress, and Sister Lynn Marie McKenzie, Federation President (l to r): Sister Susan Quaintance (Chicago), Sister Bernadine Reyes, Prioress, and Sister Lynn Marie McKenzie, Federation President
(l to r) Sisters Susan Mika and Bernice Lindsey (Visitation Committee) with Sisters Lynn Marie McKenzie, Susan Quaintance, and Bernadine Reyes (l to r) Sisters Susan Mika and Bernice Lindsey (Visitation Committee) with Sisters Lynn Marie McKenzie, Susan Quaintance, and Bernadine Reyes

Barbara Austin Installed as Administrator 

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.

Benedictine Vocation Directors Gather at St. John's

National Benedictine Vocation Directors Conference Group Photo National Benedictine Vocation Directors Conference Group Photo

The National Benedictine Vocation Directors Conference met at St. John's Abbey in Collegeville, MN. Five vocation directors from the Federation of St. Scholastica were in attendance.

Federation Council Meets in Erie, PA

CIB 2017 Group photo at Daegu Priory of the Missionary Benedictines in South Korea CIB 2017 Group photo at Daegu Priory of the Missionary Benedictines in South Korea

Benedictines Attend LCWR in Orlando

Benedictine Prioresses gathered for a group photo Benedictine Prioresses gathered for a group photo
Conference Theme--Being the Presence of Love: The Power of Transformation Conference Theme--Being the Presence of Love: The Power of Transformation
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