Partners in Mission: Teresa and Leahy Bennet

By Sister Kathleen Anne Tait

Where do you find God in hidden and unexpected places? For many of us it means peering through the lenses of the ordinary to recognize the blessings hidden there.

For Teresa and Leahy Bennet, the ordinary is a farm tucked away in Pleasant Plains, Ill., that has been home for five generations of Leahy’s family. Living amidst nature and producing food provides the Bennets with a continual awareness of God’s abundance. Teresa sees those blessings, including the anticipated blessing of an eleventh grandchild, through the lens of the ordinary. She has also prayed to God to lead her where she could be more participative in God’s mission.

After Mass one Sunday her friend Graham Thompson talked to Teresa about becoming a Dominican Associate. It made sense for her. Teresa’s four children attended Our Saviour’s and Routt High School with the Dominicans. This was an experience of letting God lead through the ordinary. Because Teresa was open to participating in God’s mission of compassion and love in a new way, she said yes.

After she became an associate in 2011, Teresa was drawn to the social justice efforts of the Dominican Sisters. She strives to see where God’s compassion is needed beyond her little hamlet and tries to discern how she can make a difference. In her parish, Teresa helped with Hands Across America and Teen Life. And she fosters faith among parishioners and friends by leading Cursillo Retreats.

Teresa loves the Dominicans and their continuous attentiveness to the unfolding of “Holy Mystery” and the work of God. Wanting to support the sisters’ efforts, Teresa and Leahy have chosen to participate in the monthly donor program, Bearers of the Flame. “It’s a way to avoid writing a check every month,” she says, and acknowledges she also appreciates the ability to easily adjust the monthly amount.

This year, as we celebrate 150 years of a legacy of service for the Life of the World, would you consider becoming a monthly donor? Whatever amount fits your monthly priorities will help make possible the Dominican Sisters’ continued legacy of service to others. Simply go to the web site springfieldop.org, click the donate button, select the amount, and click Reoccurring Donation.

Please consider joining Teresa and Leahy, and the Dominican Sisters, in fulfilling God’s mission of love & compassion. Thank you!


Sister Kathleen Anne is the director of mission advancement for the Dominican Sisters.

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