Concordia native enters postulancy
Julie Christensen, 25, daughter of Jane and Keith Christensen of Concordia entered the postulancy of the Sisters of St. Joseph on October 12. The postulancy allows the candidate to experience living as a Sister of St. Joseph more fully before making a further commitment.
Julie attended Concordia schools and graduated in 2000. She earned a degree in theater with an emphasis on drama therapy at Kansas State University. After graduation she continued taking classes in family studies and human services. She also received a certificate in mediation and conflict resolution.
Julie lived at Trinity House in Topeka for year with Sisters Anna Marie Broxterman and Carolyn Teter. Trinity House is for women who would like to learn more about living in community with no obligations attached to it. The women pay their own living expenses and participate in the life of the community. The experience can be for a few weeks up to a year. Julie says, “I would absolutely recommend living at Trinity House. It is a great opportunity to see the daily life of Sisters over a longer period of time. It was fun learning not only about community but also about myself.”
“I grew up around the Sisters,” says Julie. “I used to help Sister Ann Glatter with the garden and orchard. Our home was hit by the storm in 1992 and was uninhabitable. Sister Margaret Schreck helped our family a lot during that time. I knew Sister Barbara Ellen Apaceller from youth groups.
“I was drawn to the Sisters of St. Joseph because this is my home. The community goes out and does wonderful things but they always come home. I am also drawn to their charism of active and inclusive love. I do not always do that as I should but I strive to do that.”
Her family and friends are supportive of her decision. “Many of my friends say they are not surprised,” says Julie. “They are curious about the things that I will be able to do and not do as a nun. Occasionally someone will ask me why I am doing this. I ask them if they would say that to someone who just said she was getting married.”
Her mother, Jane Christensen, says, “When Julie was eight years old she sat at the kitchen table one day that fall and asked me about Jesus. What I remember most is the look on her face and I wondered. Now 17 years later she is answering the call to labor in his harvest. She has always been an enthusiastic and gentle caregiver and I know she will serve our Lord well.”
Julie is fluent in Spanish and plays the flute and piano. She likes hiking, skiing and reading in her leisure time. She enjoys travel and has been to Europe and South America through study programs or service projects. She participated in the Sisters of St. Joseph Border Experience on the El Paso, TX/ Juarez, Mexico border.
Julie will spend this year living with Sisters in El Paso, Texas. Sister Mary Ljungdahl will mentor her as she continues to discern her call.