Sisters to host community forum on 2020 census

March 5, 2020 by  

The Sisters of St. Joseph of Concordia will host a free Community Needs Forum focusing on the 2020 Census from 11:45 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Wednesday, March 11, in the Nazareth Motherhouse auditorium. A sandwich bar will be provided. It is free and open to the public.

Sister Jean Rosemarynoski, a member of the Cloud County Complete Count Committee, said participating in the 2020 Census is essential for Concordia and Cloud County.

Featured speakers at the forum will be Kim Reynolds, executive director of Cloud Corp and chair of the Complete Count Committee, and David Driscoll, a U.S. Census representative from Salina.

The census is used to determine distribution of about $6.5 billion dollars in annual funds from the federal government to Kansas. According to Census Bureau data, there are approximately 2.9 million Kansans, so for each person counted, the state of Kansas will receive approximately $2,082 each year for 10 years.

These federal dollars help support important local services such as school lunches, Head Start preschool programs, housing, foster care, special education, children’s health insurance, Pell grants for low-income college students, highway funds, community tax credits and block grant programs. In total it helps support more than 300 different programs in Kansas.

“I think people would be very surprised to know that your federal Pell Grants are funded based off the census, as well as special education, your free and reduced lunches, your school breakfast program, vocational rehab, so many of those are things that a lot of our residents in our community rely on,” Reynolds said.

Reynolds said she is visiting with senior centers, schools, health centers to help them understand the importance of the census.

“People need to know the census questionnaire is completely confidential. They are not going to ask you questions like ‘what is your social security number’ or ‘are you a citizen of the United States.’ Those questions aren’t on there,” Reynolds said.

“It should only take people 10 to 15 minutes to fill out the census form. This year they’ll be able to do it online, through the mail or over the phone,” Reynolds said. “And the really cool thing about online is we are working in conjunction with our local libraries to have extended services or times where people would be available to help those who may not have the internet or access to a computer to still fill out their census form online if they would like that help.”

Some new things for 2020

This year it will be easier than ever for everyone to complete the census form.

  • For the first time, residents can respond online, by phone or mail. All data is collected privately and protected by federal law.
  • April 1 is the official date for the census, but the call to participate will begin in March. Households will be invited to respond by mail. First a letter will be sent, then a reminder postcard, then a paper questionnaire. For residents with a post office box address, or households who do not respond to the mail request, a census worker will hand-deliver the questionnaire.
  • Also new this year, in November Kansas voters approved a change to align with most other states and count residents who may not be permanent but are living here now. If a person lives or sleeps most of the year in Kansas, then he or she should complete the census form using the Kansas address.

Learn more at 2020census.gov.

Lunch will be provided without charge by the Sisters of St. Joseph, and those planning to come are asked to RSVP to 243-2149 or sisterjean@csjkansas.org. Parking is available in lot on the east side of the Motherhouse. Everyone is encouraged to attend.

This is the 36th Community Needs Forum. The Community Needs Forum grew out of informal meetings between the Sisters of St. Joseph and community leaders in the fall of 2008. The first working lunch was held in January 2009, and the continuing gatherings have identified what participants see as the greatest needs in the community and have established smaller groups to seek solutions. The working lunches provide an opportunity for updates on projects and a clearinghouse for new ideas.

 

“There was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly” will be featured book at March’s Reading with Friends

February 25, 2020 by  

March’s book for Reading with Friends at Neighbor to Neighbor will be “There was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly!” by Lucille Colandro and illustrated by Jared Lee.

It’s the Old Lady from the famous childhood song as you’ve never seen her before! Now she’s swallowing animals from the classic story … to create a home full of lovable pets!

With rhyming text and hilarious illustrations, this is the original song young readers know and love with a wacky twist.

The book will be read by special guest Janene Aggson.

Story time will begin at 10 a.m. Friday, March 6. This month’s event is a week earlier than usual, as Neighbor to Neighbor will be closed for Spring Break the following week.

The story times for children 3 to 5 years old are usually on the second Fridays of the month and all begin at 10 a.m. at Neighbor to Neighbor, 103 E. Sixth St. Each session includes playtime and a snack for the children, plus each child will receive a free copy of that day’s book to take home.

There is a limit of 30 children per session so parents must register in advance. Call Neighbor to Neighbor at 785/262-4215 or email neighbortoneighbor@csjkansas.org.

The monthly program has been a part of Neighbor to Neighbor’s regular offerings since September 2012.

 

Full house at Neighbor to Neighbor’s Reading with Friends

February 7, 2020 by  

It was a packed house Friday, Feb. 7, for Neighbor to Neighbor’s monthly Reading with Friends.

This month’s reader was Alisha Sipe, a mother and friend of Neighbor to Neighbor. With one of her children in her lap and another in the audience, she read, “That’s NOT a Hippopotamus!” by picture-book writer Juliette

MacIver and illustrator Sarah Davis.

The event is limited to 30 kids, but there may have been a few extra on Friday morning. Each family gets a copy of the book to take home for free.

Sister Missy Ljungdahl, director of Neighbor to Neighbor, made sure to let the mom’s know that if they got short on books this week they would order more.

After introducing Sipe, Sister Missy let the moms in the audience know that Sipe was involved with Concordia Area Moms, a local support group, and that there would be an informal get together while the kids enjoyed playtime in the toy room. Concordia Area Moms has an active Facebook page with the slogan, “We’re not meant to go through motherhood alone.”

The next Reading with Friends will be at 10 a.m. on March 6 at Neighbor to Neighbor, 103 E. Sixth Street. This is a week earlier than normal. Each session includes playtime and a snack for the children, plus each child will receive a free copy of that day’s book to take home.

There is a limit of 30 children per session so parents must register in advance. Call Neighbor to Neighbor at 785/262-4215 or email neighbortoneighbor@csjkansas.org.
The monthly program has been a part of Neighbor to Neighbor’s regular offerings since September 2012.

“That’s NOT a Hippopotamus!” will be featured book at February’s Reading with Friends

January 29, 2020 by  

February’s book for Reading with Friends at Neighbor to Neighbor will be “That’s NOT a Hippopotamus!” by picture-book writer Juliette MacIver and illustrator Sarah Davis.

Hijinks and hilarity ensue when a “safari” school class field trip turns into a hippo hunt as a rambunctious class and their beleaguered teacher search high and low for the elusive mammal. Clever, rhythmic lines roll off the tongue, and detailed drawings give each child a distinct personality while adding to the merriment, as first a giraffe then a parade of other land and water animals are roped, wrangled, and dragged by eager boys and girls to be presented as the misplaced hippo, lurking ever so subtly in the shadows.

The book will be read by special guest Alisha Sipe.

Story time will begin at 10 a.m. Friday, Feb. 7.

The story times for children 3 to 5 years old are usually on the second Fridays of the month and all begin at 10 a.m. at Neighbor to Neighbor, 103 E. Sixth St. Each session includes playtime and a snack for the children, plus each child will receive a free copy of that day’s book to take home.

There is a limit of 30 children per session so parents must register in advance. Call Neighbor to Neighbor at 785/262-4215 or email neighbortoneighbor@csjkansas.org.
The monthly program has been a part of Neighbor to Neighbor’s regular offerings since September 2012.

Start your January with our Jubilarians!

January 14, 2020 by  

The January Messenger is on its way to your home. It is full of news about all our sisters … but particularly our sisters celebrating their Jubilee years! Of course our other sisters are always busy. They study in Rome. They lead Catholic youth to conferences. And they work hard on many community fundraising events.

The Messenger is free to anyone who requests it (email lhansen@csjkansas.org) or you can view it here online!

Thank you for supporting our sisters and we hope you enjoy celebrating our Jubilarians!

“The Mitten” will be featured book for January’s Reading with Friends

January 6, 2020 by  

January’s book for Reading with Friends at Neighbor to Neighbor will be “The Mitten” by award-winning author and illustrator Jan Brett.

The story starts off with a boy named Nicki who drops his white mitten in the snow. One by one, woodland animals find it and crawl in — first a curious mole, then a rabbit, a badger and others, each one larger than the last. Finally, a big brown bear is followed in by a tiny brown mouse, and what happens next makes for a wonderfully funny climax.

The book will be read by special guest Laura Hansen, administrative assistant in the Sisters of St. Joseph of Concordia’s Development Office.

Story time will begin at 10 a.m. Friday, Jan. 10.

The story times for children 3 to 5 years old are on the second Fridays of the month and all begin at 10 a.m. at Neighbor to Neighbor, 103 E. Sixth St. Each session includes playtime and a snack for the children, plus each child will receive a free copy of that day’s book to take home.

There is a limit of 30 children per session so parents must register in advance. Call Neighbor to Neighbor at 785/262-4215 or email neighbortoneighbor@csjkansas.org.

The monthly program has been a part of Neighbor to Neighbor’s regular offerings since September 2012.

 

Sisters of St. Joseph welcome community for open house

December 9, 2019 by  

It was standing room only for a while as families packed the Nazareth Motherhouse auditorium for the annual Christmas Open House on Dec. 8. 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. Santa and Mrs. Claus posed for photos with all the children during the free event.

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.
“I think we served more than 450 cookies,” Larry Metro, food service supervisor for the Sisters of St. Joseph, said. The iced, sugar cookies were a definite hit.

Other Sisters directed guests through the historic Motherhouse so that visitors could view the Heritage Center and Christmas decorations.

Some people might wonder why a convent would offer a visit with Santa, said President Jean Rosemarynoski, CSJ.

“We do it for several reasons. Many young families have not met religious sisters and this is an opportunity for a short visit with sisters, a tour of the Motherhouse and to learn more about us,” Sister Jean said. “There were adults who toured our new Heritage Room and afterward sought out a specific sister whose story they read to learn more about her and her work. That provided for a wonderful conversation!”

“Having Santa at the Motherhouse also provides a no-cost, fun experience between parents and children. There are coloring sheets for the kids and parents sit with them at the table,” Sister Jean said. “Many parents and grandparents were appreciative of having a place to share this experience with their children in a relaxed, welcoming environment.”

“Everyone had so much fun! Most of the kids were overjoyed to see Santa and Mrs. Claus but there were a few that were a little unsure,” said Ambria Gilliland, assistant director of development for the Sisters of St. Joseph of Concordia. “We had a great crowd! The sisters truly enjoyed interacting with the kids. Santa and Mrs. Claus are such good sports. Santa even traded hats with a little boy and had fun trying to coax a smile from the kids by getting them to say ‘Pepsi’ instead of the usual ‘Cheese!’”

This year’s event also offered a drawing for a free door prize.

The door prize was a hand-crafted wooden sign with the words “O come let us adore him” and a manger painted on it. It had battery-operated lights that looked like stars in the night sky. Danielle Haskett, of Concordia, was the lucky winner.

“I was so happy with the crowd we had,” Gilliland said. “Seeing the joy on the kids’ faces truly made the whole event worth the work.”

“Santa Bruce” will be featured book for December’s Reading with Friends

December 3, 2019 by  

December’s book for Reading with Friends at Neighbor to Neighbor will be “Santa Bruce” by award-winning author and illustrator Ryan T. Higgins.

Bruce is a lot of things. He is a bear. He is a grump. He is a pretty decent cook. One thing Bruce is not? Santa Claus. But that doesn’t stop the whole forest from lining up to give them their Christmas wishes when he becomes the victim of mistaken identity … again.

The book will be read by special guest Tonya Merrill.

Story time will begin at 10 a.m. Friday, Dec. 13.

The story times for children 3 to 5 years old are on the second Fridays of the month and all begin at 10 a.m. at Neighbor to Neighbor, 103 E. Sixth St. Each session includes playtime and a snack for the children, plus each child will receive a free copy of that day’s book to take home.

There is a limit of 30 children per session so parents must register in advance. Call Neighbor to Neighbor at 785/262-4215 or email neighbortoneighbor@csjkansas.org.

The monthly program has been a part of Neighbor to Neighbor’s regular offerings since September 2012.

Motherhouse to host annual Christmas Open House

December 3, 2019 by  

Santa Claus and Mrs. Claus will return to the annual Nazareth Motherhouse Christmas Open House this year. Bring the kids by for snacks and coloring and a chat with St. Nick while you take in the beauty of the historic Nazareth Motherhouse decked out in its Christmas finery.

All ages are welcome from 1 to 3 p.m. on Sunday, Dec. 8.

 

The Open House will include holiday music, coloring fun for the kids and, of course, cookies, along with punch and coffee.

Also included will be limited self-guided tours of the landmark home, which was built in 1902 and 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, assist with tours and serve refreshments.

This is the third year that Santa Claus has been invited to be part of the sisters’ Christmas Open House, and organizers are pleased by the increased turnout each year.

“Seeing the children’s faces light up when they walk in and see Santa and Mrs. Claus makes all the work worth it!” said Ambria Gilliland, assistant development director for the Sisters.

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.

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. The Nazareth Motherhouse is located at 1300 Washington, Concordia, Kan.

Come join us and celebrate the season!

Obituary for Karma Imogen Smith-Grindell, CSJ Associate

November 25, 2019 by  

Karma Imogen Smith-Grindell passed peacefully in the early morning hours of Nov. 13, 2019, after a long battle with Alzheimer’s disease.

Karma was born Nov. 28, 1940, in Columbus, Ohio, at 1:14 p.m. When first measured days after birth, she weighed 3 lbs. 10.5 oz. Her estimated birth weight was 3 lbs. 13 oz. She was born about 6 weeks early, and her twin brother who preceded her in birth died shortly after her arrival. She was not expected to survive, but defied the odds and returned to the home of her mother and father, Margaret Hayes Smith and Laban Conrad Smith, on Dec. 31, 1940. Her name was a testament to her birth story: Karma (Sanskrit — “Destiny”) Imogen (Greek — “Beloved child”) and (Gaelic — “Maiden”).

Karma’s younger brother, Hartman, was born in 1944. Karma’s father was a Navy officer, and the family relocated numerous times during her childhood for his postings. Her homes included Auburn, Ala., Galveston, Texas and the Canal Zone, Panama. She remembered with particular fondness the years in Panama. The family eventually settled in Terre Haute, Ind., where her father was a professor of English at Indiana State University. They enjoyed summers at family farms in Wisconsin, and had a litany of pets, including several dogs, ducks and chickens.

After graduating from Wiley High School in 1957, Karma spent a summer in France as a camp counselor. She then attended the University of Michigan where she earned a bachelor’s degree in English. She entered Harvard graduate school in 1962, where she was re-acquainted with her high school debate partner, Michael LR Donnelly, who would become her first husband.

They were married in 1964, and had two children: Anna Callysta was born in Boston in 1966, and Maxwell Conor was born in Madison, Wis., in 1969. The family would move to Manhattan, Kan., in 1972. Karma worked at Kansas State University as director of the English as a Second Language program, and was a doting and attentive mother. After the dissolution of her first marriage in 1981, Karma stayed in Manhattan for several years, then lived in Concordia, Kan., where she became an ecumenical member of the Congregation of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Concordia. Although not Catholic herself, Karma remained a committed and active participant in the CSJ Associates for decades thereafter. She also lived briefly in Pendle Hill, Penn., at a Quaker community.

After leaving academia in 1983, Karma became a Licensed Practical Nurse, providing hospice and home care to elderly residents in the farm country surrounding Manhattan, Kan. She later added skills in massage and energy work (shiatzu and jin shin jyutsu) which she applied generously to any who suffered the slings and arrows of physical or emotional injury. Fascinated by human psychology and the puzzles of our inner beings, Karma was for many years a learned practitioner of the Enneagram personality system, and an active participant in the vibrant international community of Enneagram students.

Karma married the love of her life, Rob Grindell, on July 8, 1989. For more than a decade, Rob and Karma traveled the world and reveled in the joys of each others’ company. Destinations included many of our United States by small plane (Rob piloting, Karma navigating), Greece, Mexico, Canada, Belize, Hawaii and Europe. Karma also made a memorable solo trip to Leh, Ladakh, as a participant in an international Buddhist women’s conference. Karma spent much of her adult life pursuing spiritual growth, and considered herself a Quaker catholic Zen Buddhist (lowercase “c” intentional).

After a long battle with cancer, Rob passed away on Dec. 19, 2000. Karma remained in Manhattan until 2006, where she was a beloved member of multiple spiritual communities. In 2006, she packed house and home and moved to Colorado Springs, where her brother Hartman and his wife Nancy lived. She continued to travel extensively, including many trips to California to visit her daughter Anna and grandchildren Maya and Dante. Her son Max’s family — wife Kelly and daughters Claire and Caroline — were blessed to have her nearby, and she was a frequent short-term guest in their household in Littleton, Colo., where the resident dogs would celebrate her arrival with wags and kisses.

Throughout her life, Karma was beloved by her community and friends as an individual who personified kindness. Alzheimer’s never robbed her of her inherently sweet and loving disposition, and to the end her caregivers adored her.

She is survived by her brothers Hartman and Nancy Smith of Jacksonville, Fla., and brother Forrest and Shiela Smith of Terre Haute, Ind.; her children Maxwell and Kelden Donnelly of Littleton, Colo., Anna and Burman Deshautelle of Agoura Hills, Calif., and Michael Grindell and Jennifer Grindell of Atlanta, Ga.; and grandchildren Claire, Caroline, Dante, Maya, Maclean, Samantha and Grace (all over the place).

A service in Karma’s memory will be held in the spring in Manhattan, Kan.

In lieu of flowers, please direct donations in Karma’s memory to Sisters of St. Joseph of Concordia, P.O Box 279, Concordia, KS 66901.

To make an online donation in Karma’s memory, click on the button below:

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