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National Catholic Sisters Week Events Generate Joy

Teenage boys, eight-year-olds, and 30-somethings all enjoyed interacting with Springfield Dominican Sisters during their first year of participation in major National Catholic Sisters Week Events.

Catholic Sisters Week began in 2015 as a part of National Women’s History Month. It is now an official component of Women’s History Month. It was authorized by Molly Murphy MacGregor, co-founder of National Women’s History Project, who was educated and deeply influenced by Catholic sisters. In 1981, Women’s History Month launched as a single week. By 1987, U.S. Congress formally expanded it to the full month of March.

This year, for the first time, NCSW events were scheduled to appeal to a broad range of people and interests.

The week kicked off Saturday March 9 at Jubilee Farm with Sisters to the Land. This popular activity had a waiting list of participants. Then the monsoon-like rains hit, just as guests were meant to arrive. The hardiest participants made it through the wind and rain to spend an enjoyable afternoon learning from the sisters at Jubilee Farm about their ministry and trying their hand at companion planting and bird-house building.

On March 14 Sacred Heart-Griffin High School juniors and seniors joined the sisters at Sacred Heart Convent for evening prayer, dinner, and a rousing round of games.

Along with seven other congregations of Catholic Sisters who serve in Sangamon and Christian counties, we published a full-page ad in Springfield’s weekly, Illinois Times, as an expression of gratitude for those who minister alongside Catholic sisters and offer encouragement and appreciation.

Later in the month, twenty-five preteen girls and their moms enjoyed an interactive, kid-friendly tour of the chapel and sat down to a fancy tea with the sisters.

“We had such a great time welcoming our guests and sharing our lives with them,” said Sister Beth Murphy, one of the event organizers. “We’ll do it again next year for sure.”

(Editor’s note: The 2020 Catholic Sisters Week schedule is shaping up. Mother-Daughter Tea & Tour is Sunday March 8, 2020; the SHG Hospitality Night is March 12, 2020, and Sisters to the Land at Jubilee Farm is Saturday March 14, 2020. Watch the website for details!)

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