In This Issue
Allegany Franciscans Website
FSA Jamaica Website
Like us on Facebook
CL Meetings
January 8-9  
February 12-13
 Assembly Planning Committee (APC) Zoom Call
January 10 and February 5
Leadership Day at Mt. Ireneaus
February 2 
Franciscan-Clarian Spirituality
February 21-23 
Issue 6.01
January 8, 2018  
Baptism of the Lord
Today we celebrate the feast of the baptism of the Lord. Let us ponder this day that baptism, the sacrament, is the encounter of our God with us. Too often we may think of baptism as a ritual, a celebration of bringing an infant, a child, or an adult into membership within the church.
The sacrament of baptism is so much more. It is an encounter with our living God and God's desire to be and dwell with us. In Jesus' baptism God's encounter was dynamic. John the Baptist witnessed in the event, "On coming up out of the water he saw the heavens being torn open and the Spirit, like a dove, descending upon him. And a voice came from the heavens,
'You are my beloved One; with you I am well pleased.'"
May we be enlivened in our baptismal life and so encounter God's presence and love in our lives. As the baptized of God may we proclaim love and peace to all people!
Motherhouse Gift Shop Gives Back 
By: Denise Bunk-Hatch, Communications Director

   A group of Sisters at St. Elizabeth Motherhouse have combined their creative talents for the benefit of others. The eight sisters (Sr. Mary Belair, Sr. Barbara Bartkowiak, Sr. Eva DiCamillo, Sr. Alma Glenn, Sr Ellen MacDonell, Sr. Melissa Scholl, Sr. Mary Joan Burke, and bookkeeper Sr Helen Lodge) call themselves "The Franciscan Crafters", and provide hand-made items such as greeting cards, crocheted blankets, pottery, and jewelry for sale in the gift shop located behind the Motherhouse reception desk.
   The gifts are offered for the price of a small donation, all proceeds of which are distributed to organizations that serve the poor and marginalized. Within the last six months, their donations have totaled over $2,000.
   Stop by and take a look!

St. Anthony's Faith Community Nursing Office holds Christmas event for Sisters
From: STATNews

   On December 7, 2017,  the Faith Community Nursing (FCN) office hosted a Christmas event for the sisters at St. Elizabeth Convent, Tampa, and all active FCNs. The event was held at the Franciscan Center. Guests enjoyed celebrating with food and music from harpist, Judy Taylor FCN; Lake Magdalene UMC participated in a "Drum Circle", led by Steve Turner of Giving Tree Music, followed by the singing of traditional Christmas Carols, accompanied by Linda Wilkerson, the FCN Manager. This year's theme was "Drummer Boy", and each attendee was given a specially designed and crafted wooden ornament of a Drummer Boy created for the event. Approximately 35 people attended, and all enjoyed the fellowship and atmosphere of this annual gathering!

New Spirituality Resources available  
   The Franciscan-Clarian Spirituality Committee has compiled a list of resources meant to enhance spiritual learning.

Links to these documents are also available on the Franciscan Sisters of Allegany Spirituality page.
There's Room at St. Anthony's 
By: Mary McNally OSF

   Bethlehem. A Stable. No room in the Inn. The Innkeeper did not realize who he had taken in, but he knew there was a need.
   Fast forward 2000 years: St. Petersburg, FL, St. Anthony Hospital, "No room in the Inn." We take whoever comes to our Emergency Center door, because there is a need.
   This morning, Christmas Eve, as I was passing through the Peace Garden by the lobby, I wished a woman who was sitting there Merry Christmas.  She proceeded to tell me that she is a retired nurse and "loves this hospital."  She had worked for an agency and was involved with all the hospitals in the area. She went on to say that this is the only hospital where they genuinely care for and love their patients. She said, "you feel it when you enter the door." 
    So many times people will say there is something special about St. Anthony's, you feel it as soon as you enter the lobby. I truly believe it is our atmosphere of love. Our Team Members love what they do, love working here, love who they work with, and especially love their patients! In a world where there is so much hate and division, St. Anthony's is an oasis of love and peace.  That's why people want to come here! When people are in need, they come here because they find genuine care, compassion, and acceptance - elements of love.
   We are blessed to have our Board, Physicians, Team Members, Auxiliary, and Volunteers who make up St. Anthony's Family and who are so dedicated to caring for others, and create our atmosphere of Love throughout the year.
   During this month as we celebrate Hanukkah, Christmas and Kwanzaa, it's all about love - of family, of others.
   On behalf of the Franciscan Sisters of Allegany, we wish our St. Anthony's Family a Christmas and New Year filled with love and peace. Let us continue this season of love, peace, and joy throughout the year! 

Book Review: "Small Great Things" 
By: Margaret Magee OSF  
  I've often believed and said, that with God there is no such thing as a coincidence! I've experienced yet another "God coincidence" recently when someone loaned me the book Small Great Things and said "you have to read this." Over the past few months I have attended workshops on the topics of racism, have read many articles following the controversies over Confederate monuments, the white supremacy rallies and the "alt-right" mentalities. All of these events might seem to be new and recent occurrences but they are simply feelings and attitudes of racism and hatred that have been buried deep in our American consciences throughout our history. Many people thought that we had overcome these negative and dangerous attitudes with the Civil Rights Movement or with the election of our first African American President, Barack Obama. Unfortunately, the deeply buried attitudes were only suppressed and they are now arising with raw emotions and violent actions that need to be faced and discussed.
   In her novel, Small Great Things, Jodi Picoult delves into the deep waters and emotions of racism through the life of Ruth Jefferson, an African American woman who is a nurse in labor and delivery at a Connecticut hospital. Ruth is well-educated and has served at the hospital for over 20 years. She is respected by her supervisors and coworkers and sees herself as an important member of the labor and delivery team. That is until she shows up for work one day and begins a routine exam on a newborn, the infant son of parents who are white supremacists. The twists and turns of this story and the conversations and experiences between Ruth and the other characters were enlightening and soul-searching. How do I engage and interact with people of color? What stereotypes about people of another race have I grown up with and still hold today?
   We can no longer be color blind! We must be more open and engaging with others who are different from ourselves. We must become attentive and sensitive to the call for diversity, acceptance, and openness of all people as our sisters and brothers created in the image and likeness of our God.
   Small Great Things is a book that can help us open our minds and hearts to see differently and to hear the pain and struggles of others oppressed by our American attitudes of white privilege. Read the book! Get family and friends to read it and talk about it. Jodi Picoult also provides a discussion guide for your sharing and personal reflection.
   With incredible empathy, intelligence, and candor, Jodi Picoult tackles race, privilege, prejudice, justice, and compassion  -and doesn't offer easy answers. Small Great Things is remarkable.  

Upcoming deadlines:
Submissions are not guaranteed publication. All submissions will be edited prior to inclusion, 
and may be held for future use if deemed appropriate.

January 17, 2018 - Second edition January e-newsletter
February 7, 2018 - First edition February e-newsletter