Mass celebrates all religious Sisters in the Salina Diocese

May 16, 2018 by  

The Nazareth Motherhouse in Concordia was host to the annual Mass of Appreciation and Thanksgiving for all religious Sisters serving in the Salina Diocese on Wednesday, May 16. About 50 religious sisters from three congregations attended the Mass.

This was the first time that the annual appreciation Mass has been held in Concordia, said Sister Jean Rosemarynoski, president of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Concordia. The event started with Mass at 11 a.m. with Father Frank E. Coady, Diocesan Administrator, in the Sacred Heart Chapel at the Nazareth Motherhouse followed by a luncheon in the Motherhouse dining room.

“The fact that it was here this year let a lot more of us attend, because otherwise three-quarters of us couldn’t go,” said Sister Cese Green, of Concordia, referring to many of her fellow retired sisters who are restricted health-wise in their mobility.

In addition to the Sisters of St. Joseph of Concordia, the Missionaries of the Eucharistic Heart of Christ the King in Salina and the Missionaries of the Holy Savior and St. Brigid in Hays attended the service and luncheon.

In attendance to honor the Sisters were Fathers Frank Coady, Diocesan Administrator, of Manhattan; James Hoover, of Concordia; Kerry Ninemire, of Manhattan; Jerry Morgan, of Salina; Larry Letourneau, of Salina; Don Zimmerman, of Manhattan; Henry Baxa, of Belleville; Steve Heina, of Clyde; David Metz, of Concordia; Keith Weber, of Salina; John Wolesky, of Solomon; and Msgr. James Hake, of Salina.

“We have gathered here today to thank you for what you do and what you continue to do,” Father Coady said during the Mass. “You Sisters have lived in the classroom, witnessed in the hospital, been dedicated to the poor. You have made a profession of this faith.”

Following the Mass, the sisters and priests had time to renew old friendships over lunch.

“Many of the sisters and priests have worked together. It was wonderful for them to have an opportunity to visit with long-time friends,” said Sister Jean Rosemarynoski. “The sisters appreciated sharing our home with the priests, other sisters who minister in the diocese and guests from the chancery.  We were delighted with the day!”

Motherhouse Plant Sale and Manna House garage sale set for May 5

April 30, 2018 by  

Ambria Gilliland displays one of the barn quilt pieces that will be up for sale at the annual Spring Plant Sale.

For the third year in a row, the Sisters of St. Joseph of Concordia will be having a Spring Plant Sale — featuring plants, flowers and vegetables grown in the Motherhouse greenhouse by gardener Lyle Pounds — as well as the annual Manna House of Prayer garage sale.

Both events will be on the grounds of the Nazareth Motherhouse, 13th and Washington streets in Concordia, so shoppers can browse all the bargains at one convenient location.

The sales will be from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, May 5, at the Motherhouse. And this year has a new twist that will allow gardeners to take a little bit of the Motherhouse home with them.

Visitors will be allowed to dig up perennial plants from four select beds in the Motherhouse’s sunken garden and take them home to be transplanted in their own yard for the price of a donation.

“The four beds are being redesigned by Trish Remley at Grassland Gardens in Miltonvale, so we want to find these plants a good home,” Pounds said.

Shovels will be provided, but guests are encouraged to bring buckets, boxes or bags to transport the plants. The cost of the plants will be by donation.

Plants include bulbs, coneflowers, iris, dwarf daylilies, columbine, Shasta daisies, black-eyed Susans and a lot of mums.

“The plants are just now coming up so it’s an ideal time to be transplanting,” Pounds said.

Along with plants and flowers, there will be hand-painted pots, signs and other garden art created by Development Office staff. Ambria Gilliland, assistant director of the sisters’ Development Office, development assistant Laura Hansen and Pounds have spent time throughout the winter and spring getting plants started and growing. The selection will include geraniums, bulbs, bedding plants, house plants, hanging baskets and vegetables.

“We had so much fun the first year, we decided to make it an annual event,” said Gilliland.

All the proceeds from the Spring Plant Sale benefit the Raise for the Roof project for the Sisters of St. Joseph, while garage sale proceeds support Manna House programs, including the Helping Hands emergency assistance fund. Last year the event brought in more than $2,600 for the Sisters of St. Joseph and their ministries.

Friends and family enjoy annual spaghetti dinner at Motherhouse

March 18, 2018 by  

It isn’t just a spaghetti dinner. It’s a family reunion. And what a family!

The Nazareth Motherhouse in Concordia was filled with visitors on Sunday, March 18 — some were family, all were friends, and all enjoying the whirl that is the annual Motherhouse Spaghetti Dinner. In the midst of the prize drawings, silent auction, building tours, bake sale, musical performances and food, one of the most important attractions of this annual event was the one-on-one conversations.

Catching up. Renewing friendships. Sharing memories.

One of the family members visiting was Dee Levett, of Florida, the biological sister of Sister Christina Brodie. She posted the winning bid on the custom rustic Kansas porch bench that was part of the silent auction. Her bid of $1,000 secured the bench.

“Since it won’t fit in my suitcase, I guess I better donate it,” Levett smiled. She donated the bench to the Manna House of Prayer where it will no doubt be a popular item.

The custom-made Easter baskets were a hot item, selling out quickly. Visitors enjoyed selecting from grab bags, visiting the gift shop and picking up home-made baked goods at the bake sale.

Kitchen staff, buoyed by volunteers, served 571 dinners and the event raised $11,252.28 to benefit the ministries of the Sisters of St. Joseph.

Musicians performing were Randy Halfhide, John Paul Breault, Sarah Jeardoe and Sarah Ganzer.

In the prize drawings, the winners were:

  • $500 —Rita Cooper, O’Fallon, Ill.
  • $200 cash —JoAnne Crispin, Hays, Kan.
  • $100 cash —Laura Jo Meyer, Concordia
  • Keurig coffee maker —Chris Wilbur, Belleville, Kan.
  • CharBroil grill —Becky Maguffee, Salina, Kan.
  • Quilt (made by Sisters Betty Suther and Ann Glatter) — Jeanette Kreimer, Blue Springs, Mo.

Helping to draw the winning tickets was Jack Gilliland, son of Eric and Ambria Gilliland, of Concordia.

The annual special event is organized by the sisters’ Development Office, with months of work by assistant director of development Ambria Gilliland and assistant Laura Hansen.

“We had such a fun day,” Gilliland said. “Everything seemed to run smoothly because of our awesome volunteers. We are so grateful for our friends that come out to support us time after time!”



Follow the Yellow Brick Road to annual Spaghetti Dinner

March 8, 2018 by  

Tickets are now available for the 2018 Sisters of St. Joseph Spaghetti Dinner, the biggest event of the year at the Nazareth Motherhouse, 1300 Washington, Concordia.

A winning raffle ticket could win the owner a new CharBroil grill, a hand-crafted quilt, a Keurig machine or cash prizes.

The dinner is set for Sunday, March 18, with dinner being served from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Advance dinner tickets cost $8 for adults and $4 for children ages 5-12, and are available at the Motherhouse, at Manna House of Prayer and at Neighbor to Neighbor. They are also available by calling the Sisters of St. Joseph Development Office, (785) 243-2113, ext. 1225, or emailing

Dinner tickets at the door will cost $10 for adults and $6 for children. (Children 4 and younger eat free.)

The theme of this year’s spring fundraiser is “Follow the Yellow Brick Road,” and it features activities for the entire family, tours of the historic Motherhouse and performances by local musicians. There will be drawings for prizes of up to $500 cash, a silent auction and the popular “grab bag,” with gifts for $1, $2 and $3. Homemade baked goods and Easter baskets will be available for sale.

A variety of Easter baskets will be available for purchase.

Throughout the event, the Nazareth Gift Shop will be open.

Tickets for the drawing cost $1 each, or six tickets for $5. Ticket holders in the drawing choose which prize to try for. This year there are cash prizes of $500, $200 and $100, plus a CharBroil gas grill, a Keurig coffee maker and a 69” x 84” quilt constructed by Sister Betty Suther and hand-quilted by Sister Ann Glatter.

Winners will be drawn about 1:30 p.m., but you need not be present to win. Bidding in the silent auction will close at the same time.

In 2017, a record 625 people attended the sisters’ spaghetti dinner, which raised almost $11,000 to support the Concordia sisters and their ministries.

Sisters honor employees and volunteers with annual luncheon

December 14, 2017 by  

Sisters of St. Joseph of Concordia treated employees and volunteers to their annual Christmas luncheon on Dec. 12 at the Nazareth Motherhouse. In addition to employees at the Motherhouse, staff came from the CSJ Center on Court Street, Manna House of Prayer and Neighbor to Neighbor. Volunteers who regularly give their time to the sisters’ various ministries were also included in the festivities.

Sister Jean Rosemarynoski, president, welcomed everyone to the event.

“We always look forward to this every year. We come together as one,” she said. “Honesty, integrity, perseverance and character. We see this in all of you. God has blessed us with Concordia’s finest.”

Employees also receive a small  gift  as part of the Sisters’ tradition.

The food for the annual Christmas luncheon is all prepared and served by Sisters, as a small way of thanking employees and volunteers for their dedication during the year.

Santa and Mrs. Claus welcome a big crowd to Nazareth Motherhouse

December 11, 2017 by  

It was standing room only for a while as families packed the Nazareth Motherhouse auditorium for the annual Christmas Open House on Dec. 10. Beautiful weather and the return of last year’s popular Santa and Mrs. Claus — who on other days are known as Dell Lee and Annette Boswell of Leon, Iowa — led to some long lines through the auditorium and snaking out into the lobby.

Luckily, many Sisters of St. Joseph of Concordia were on hand to serve ice-cold milk and punch and a selection of Christmas cookies to the crowds waiting to meet Santa.

Others took advantage of holiday sale prices and visited the Nazareth Motherhouse gift shop, or took a tour through the historic home decorated for Christmas.

“I was extremely pleased with the turnout. Everyone seemed to have a great time,” said Ambria Gilliland, assistant director of development. “The sisters truly enjoy seeing the happiness in all the children. It’s exciting for everyone!”

 This year’s event also offered a drawing for a free door prize which was won by Luciana Thrash of Concordia.

Prize winners announced at Holiday Boutique

November 21, 2017 by  

Crowded lines greeted early-morning visitors to the annual Neighbor to Neighbor Holiday Boutique on Saturday morning (Nov. 18) as eager shoppers queued up early to get first pick of the holiday goodies available for purchase.

The bake sale tables — featuring homemade cookies, candies, breads, cakes and other treats — gathered immediate attention. Then shoppers and supporters could turn their attention to the array of tables and stands loaded with hand-crafted children’s toys and clothes, decorations, quilts, kitchen items and jewelry.

All the items are made by the women who come to the center, along with friends and supporters of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Concordia who operate Neighbor to Neighbor.

The event ended at 2 p.m. with a drawing for eight prizes:

  • Pam Campbell won the “Apple Fest 2017” quilt, with hand-appliqued blocks donated to Neighbor to Neighbor and design completed and stitched by master quilter Sandra Detrixhe.
  • Jeanette Denault won a Barbie-sized fashion doll with her own lace-covered closet filled with outfits handmade by Sister Susan Stoeber.
  • Naomi Larouche won a glazed ceramic wall-mount letter holder that was donated to Neighbor to Neighbor.
  • Alexis Seim took home a fashion doll with her own lace-covered closet filled with outfits handmade by Sister Susan Stoeber.
  • Vera Gerard was the winner of a Seth Thomas mantle clock, model No. 11, donated to Neighbor to Neighbor.
  • Pam Campbell also won a larger-sized fashion doll with her own closet filled with unique outfits handmade by Sister Susan Stoeber.
  • Vera Gerard also won the baby doll complete with crib, hand-made wardrobe, diaper bag full of accessories and a baby quilt made by Sister Susan Stoeber.
  • JoAnn Haist won the Barbie collectible music box entitled “Wedding Day 1959” complete with box.

All proceeds from the annual event support the programs, artists and craftswomen at Neighbor to Neighbor.

Santa Claus is coming to town for Motherhouse Open House!

November 16, 2017 by  

Santa Claus and Mrs. Claus will return to our Christmas Open House this year! And they’re bringing delicious cookies made by Mrs. Claus. Bring the kids by for snacks and crafts and a chat with St. Nick while you take in the beauty of the historic Nazareth Motherhouse.

All ages are welcome from 1 to 3 p.m. on Sunday, Dec. 10.

The Open House will include holiday music, coloring and crafts for the kids and, of course, cookies, along with punch and coffee. Also included will be guided tours of our five-story landmark home, which has been on the National Register of Historic Places since 1973. Numerous Sisters of St. Joseph of Concordia will be on hand to welcome guests, lead tours and serve refreshments.

Last year was the first time Santa Claus was invited to be part of the sisters’ Christmas Open House, and organizers were pleased by the turnout. Several children were reluctant to take up the traditional seat on Santa’s lap, but were willing to try a turn sitting with Mrs. Claus.

“I’m so surprised — and pleased,” one mother said of her 3-year-old son. “He seemed a little afraid of a big man in a red suit, but went to her right away.”
Last year’s hit Santa and Mrs. Claus — who on other days are known as Dell Lee and Annette Boswell of Leon, Iowa — will return again this year to delight their young guests. Be prepared for an entertaining time making Christmas memories and photographs that will last.

“I was so happy to see all the young families who came out,” said Ambria Gilliland, assistant development director for the Sisters following last year’s event.
The easiest access is from the east parking lot (between the Motherhouse and the Community Garden). The event is free and open to the public.

Sisters say their farewells to Bishop Edward Weisenburger

November 2, 2017 by  

The celebration of All Saints Day Mass at the Nazareth Motherhouse in Concordia was both a joyous and bittersweet affair, as the Sisters welcomed Bishop Edward Weisenburger to celebrate Mass at the Sacred Heart Chapel, but also said their farewells.

Bishop Weisenburger was appointed as bishop of Tuscon, Ariz., on Oct. 3. He will be leaving the Salina Diocese and be installed in Tuscon on Nov. 29.

Bishop Weisenburger arrived early at the Motherhouse and took time to meet with many of the Sisters in the dining room before preparing for Mass. He was assisted at Mass by Father Henry Baxa and Father David Metz.

Following Mass, the Bishop and Fathers Baxa and Metz joined the Sisters and guests for lunch and fellowship in the Motherhouse dining room.

“We never leave here hungry,” Bishop Weisenburger laughed as he filled a plate. “I’ve always felt very at home here.”

“I am praying that a new bishop will be sent quickly,” Bishop Weisenburger told the Sisters. He also said that he felt welcomed in his new location as he had already met some Sisters of St. Joseph in Tuscon.

Sister Jean Rosemarynoski, President of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Concordia, thanked the Bishop for his service.

“We are humbled and grateful that you found time to come celebrate with us today in the midst of your demanding schedule,” Sister Jean said. “You have been a wonderful friend and pastoral presence to us. You have always been open to discussions with us. We wish you every success.”

The Sisters and guests gathered in the dining room then gathered together to extend a group blessing over the Bishop as he moves onward.

“We do know you as a friend,” Sister Jean said.

Annual Pumpkin Patch to return to Motherhouse grounds

September 29, 2017 by  

That hint of chill in the night air can only mean one thing — it’s almost time for the Sisters of St. Joseph of Concordia’s annual Pumpkin Patch! This year’s family-friendly event will be from 1 to 5 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 21, and Sunday, Oct. 22.

Last year, scores of little kids — with parents, grandparents and older siblings tagging along — flooded onto the Motherhouse grounds to become candy-corn tossers, corn pile players, hay rack riders and pumpkin pickers. And this year, there are even more activities in the works and plenty of fun fall photo opportunities!

The entrance will be at the east gate (between the Motherhouse and the Concordia Community Garden of Hope), and admission is $3 per person, with kids 2 and younger free.

Returning for a third year will be the popular hay ride around the Motherhouse grounds, as well as the corn pile, hay stack slide, pumpkin bowling, games, a scavenger hunt and other kids’ activities. New this year will be face painting and a maze. Kids are encouraged to wear their Halloween costumes as they take part in the fun.

The event is organized by Ambria Gilliland, the Sisters of St. Joseph assistant development director, with lots of other staff members and volunteers lending a hand. For more information, email

All proceeds from the event benefit the Sisters of St. Joseph of Concordia and their ministries.

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