The Sisters of St. Joseph of Concordia celebrated nine jubilarians on Sunday at the Nazareth Motherhouse and thanked them for 555 years of devoted service to religious life.
The annual celebration recognizes sisters who are marking noteworthy anniversaries of the date they were received as novices into the Sisters of St. Joseph of Concordia. Since the special day comes at the end of the congregation’s annual June Assembly, almost all of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Concordia are able to be present.
Six of the congregation’s nine jubilarians were able to attend Sunday’s celebration.
The event began with a festive brunch for the jubilarians and their friends and family at 10:30 a.m. in the Nazareth Motherhouse, followed by the Jubilee Program at 12:30 p.m. in the Motherhouse auditorium. The Jubilee Liturgy followed at 2:15 p.m. in the Sacred Heart Chapel at the Motherhouse presided by Father David Metz, of Concordia. He also gave the blessing of the jubilarians.
The 2018 jubilarians honored Sunday were:
• Sister Barbara Bader, originally from Rhineland, Mo., who grew up in Nebraska, received into the Sisters of St. Joseph on March 19, 1943, and celebrating her 75th. She died on April 7, 2018.
• Sister Norma Schlick, from Wood River, Neb., received on Sept. 8, 1947, and celebrating her 70th. She lives at Mt. Joseph Senior Village in Concordia.
• Sister Ann Glatter, from Amherst, Neb., received on Feb. 2, 1949, and celebrating her 70th jubilee. She lives at the Nazareth Motherhouse in Concordia.
• Sister Charlotte Lutgen, from Claflin, Kan., received on Sept. 15, 1957, and celebrating her 60th jubilee. She lives at the Motherhouse.
• Sister Pauline Kukula, from Tipton, Kan., received into the Sisters of St. Joseph on Sept. 15, 1957 and celebrating her 60th jubilee. She lives in Salina, Kan., and teaches at Sacred Heart Jr.-Sr. High School in Salina.
• Sister Mary Lou Roberts, from Belleville, Kan., received into the Sisters of St. Joseph on Aug. 15, 1958, and celebrating her 60th jubilee. Today she lives and serves in Salina.
• Sister Catherine Michaud, from Fort Collins, Colo., celebrating her 50th, jubilee. She was received on Sept. 5, 1967, and today lives and serves in St. Paul, Minn.
• Irma Maria Nair de Sousa Lima of Terasina, Brazil, received on Feb. 20, 1966, and celebrating her 50th jubilee. She continues to live and serve in Teresina, Piauí, Brazil. She was unable to attend.
• Irma Maria das Dores Sales, of Ibiapina-Ceara, Brazil, received on Jan. 25, 1969, and celebrating her 50th jubilee. She continues to live and serve in Teresina, Piauí, Brazil. She was unable to attend.
Sister Marcia Allen, as the reflector for the jubilee program, set the tone.
“Their lives are the models of what we all hope for,” she said.
Sister Dian Hall, who acted as moderator for the program, said, “Our sisters are beautiful example of flowers who have bloomed and spread their love.”
The theme of the 2018 celebration was “The Seed becomes the Rose.”
During the program, various sisters stood to give tribute to the jubilarians.
Sister Vera Meis spoke about Sister Barbara Bader.
“Wherever she saw a need, she would be the first person to volunteer her talent or gifts,” Sister Vera said. “She was a woman who wasn’t afraid to do something new. She helped start the school at Oakley, Kan. She was an innovator. She wasn’t afraid.”
Sister Janis Wagner gave tribute to Sister Ann Glatter.
“She is an icon of generosity,” Sister Janis said. “Only God knows how many people she helped in this community.”
She told the well-known story of how Sister Ann assisted so many people in the area in her little pickup as well as her endless hours in the farm and orchard.
Sister Carolyn Junemann gave tribute to Sister Charlotte Lutgen by saying, “During our time together at St. Joseph Hospital, she was totally dedicated to the needs of the sisters. She was truly the rock for us. She probably doesn’t even realize the impact her life made on my life and so many others.”
Sister Norma Schlick was given tribute by Sister Pat McLennon.
“One of the wonderful gifts you have given to us is your words,” she said, referencing Sister Norma’s work in drafting important documents for both the Federation and the community, as well as her talent for languages. “We are truly grateful for your gift.”
Sister Carm Thibault gave tribute to Sister Pauline Kukula. Her tribute turned into Sister Polly giving a rap demonstration of how to remember the names of the apostles and the 21 epistles. It was obvious why she continues to be a favorite teacher at Sacred Heart.
“Thank you for helping so many students who will never forget what you’ve done for them,” Sister Carm said.
Sister Marilyn Stahl gave tribute to Sister Mary Lou Roberts, by noting her dedication to prison ministry and the former Catholic Children’s Home.
“Her natural strength is ministry,” Sister Marilyn said. “She’s still doing jail/prison ministry today and I think she always will.”
Sister Barbara Ellen Apaceller honored Sister Catherine Michaud by saying, “What a blessing you are to our community. Whenever I am around Cathy I want to be more like her.”
“She is making a difference in the diocese in St. Paul, Minn.,” she said. “They are blessed to have her.”
Sister Janet Lander spoke about Irma Maria das Dores Sales, who was one of the first postulants in Brazil in 1967.
“She knew the people, really knew the people with whom she worked and lived,” Sister Janet said. “Dores, we are deeply grateful to you.”
Sister Donna Otter spoke for Irma Nair de Sousa Lima’s tribute. Nair was the youngest of the group of the first eight postulants to enter CSJ in 1967 in Brazil.
“As a sister, Nair was always available for a mission. She was a missionary at heart,” Sister Donna said. “She has a passion for the mission.”
“They are our heroes, our mentors, our models,” Sister Marcia Allen said as the program closed. “We say, ‘Thank you, Sisters.’”
The jubilarians each received a gift from the congregation along with a decorated bag of cards and other small mementoes.