The Sisters of St. Joseph of Concordia celebrated Sister Sarah Ganser’s Ceremony of Religious Profession on Sept. 8 in the Sacred Heart Chapel of the Nazareth Motherhouse in Concordia.
“Words cannot describe my gratitude for the support and ongoing love on my journey to becoming a Sister of St. Joseph,” Sister Sarah said. “Every person has impacted me at different times of the journey in short or long moments. Truthfully, I would not be at this junction without those encounters.”
Sister Anna Marie Broxterman welcomed everyone to the celebration.
“Sarah is an answer to a prayer,” Sister Anna Marie said. “I’ve known Sarah since she was a teenager. Today Sarah is ready to take this leap of faith, as we, as sisters, promise to be there to support her.”
Father Greg Hammes and Father Barry Brinkman presided at the mass.
“Sarah was always special,” Father Greg said. “Jesus calls us to love all people — to love them as He loves them. That’s what it means to be a disciple, and that’s what it means to be a Sister of St. Joseph.”
“I say ‘yes’ to God’s call. We’re all called to do that. To do what God wants takes a lot of effort, humility and trust,” Father Greg said. “Thank you, Sarah, for saying ‘yes’ to Jesus.”
Music was provided by Sarah Jeardoe, Jane Wahlmeier, Teresa Hernandez and Anna Ramierez.
Congregation President Sister Jean Rosemarynoski led Sarah through her Profession of Commitment and signing of the Document of Profession. Then, with the assistance of her mentors, Sisters Missy Ljungdahl and Pat Eichner, she received her ceremonial cross and ring along with a blessing from all of the gathered sisters of the Community.
Sister Sarah currently lives in Salina, Kan., and works at Mental Health of East Central Kansas as an outpatient therapist. Her ministry is as a therapist and social worker, and her special love is working with children in schools.
“It’s been a rocky road, but a good road too,” Sister Sarah said about her journey. “I had to confront my misconceptions about myself and how I see God.”
After many years discerning her path — would it be family and children or a call to religious life — she finally found and answered her personal calling.
“It works so well for me because our charism (Sisters of St. Joseph of Concordia) is an inclusive love,” Sister Sarah said. “It’s been so freeing to not be afraid to talk about spirituality if someone is open to it. So much is interwoven.”
“I’m just excited,” Sister Sarah said about her commitment. “At first I said ‘no,’ … but God said ‘yes.’ I was won over by His persistent love.”