News and Events
Issue 2.16
August 25, 2014
In This Issue
LCWR holds annual assembly
Franciscan Center PTSD retreat program
St. Paul's School celebrates 85th year
People's Climate March to take place
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Did you know that a daily reflection is posted on our Facebook page, or that it is also shared with a Portuguese translation by our Sisters in Brazil? Take a look! 
Sr. Teresita DeSouza elected local minister for Jamaica

Thank you, Sr. Teresita, for your willingness to serve in this ministry.
LCWR Holds Annual Assembly
By: Pat Shirley, OSF


   From August 12 to 15, approximately 750 leaders of religious congregations from across the United States, as well as other countries, met in Nashville, TN, in an assembly focusing on "Holy Mystery Revealed in Our Midst." 

   Some of the highlights of the conference were:  

  • The keynote addres,: "However Long the Night" by Sr. Nancy Schreck, OSF, was rich and deep, calling religious women to live in the "middle space".  We can only encourage you to go read the text. Her title "However Long the Night" captures the beauty of embracing the night and accepting its gifts and pains in the knowledge that the new day will bring different gifts.  
  • Presentation of the 2014 LCWR Outstanding Leadership Award to Sr. Elizabeth Johnson, CSJ. We again encourage reading the text of her presentation. She shared her personal journey and the challenges of being a woman theologian trying to weave her feminine perspective into a church that has for centuries viewed theology through the lens of her male counterparts. 
  • Election of Sr. Marcia Allen, CSJ, as president-elect, and Sr. Mary Beth Gianoli, OSF, as secretary
  • Passage of two assembly resolutions on:
    • the transition to renewable energy sources; and
    • The repudiation of the doctrine of discovery, asking Pope Francis to formally repudiate the period of Christian history that used religion to justify political and personal violence against indigenous nations and peoples. 

   FSA Leadership joined three other communities, Joliet, Rochester and Sylvania, for dinner one night during the gathering. These communities, who call themselves "Al's Gals",  see themselves connected through Mother Alfred Moes. Fr. Pamfilio received Mother Alfred's vows in Allegany and the Joliet's first novice was received and entered the novitiate in Allegany, connecting the Allegany Franciscans to the other communities.


Franciscan Center gives presentation on (PTS) Post-Trauma Stress Training Retreat Program
By: Anne Dougherty, OSF
   Chief Jane Castor of Tampa Police Department and I gave a presentation to 200 law enforcement officers on the Franciscan Center Post Trauma Stress Training Retreat that we have at the Center. The conference was held at Boca Raton Hotel, Florida, for the Florida Chief of Police Association.
   We have had eight retreats and 41 police officers and firefighters who have graduated from the program, with great support and lots of deep conversations. During the conference, Chief Jane spoke on her personal experience of making the retreat and how it was a transformative experience in her life. 
  See the Winter 2014 edition of Allegany Connections for additional information on this program! 


St. Paul's School begins new school year
Submitted by: Joan Carberry, OSF
   St. Paul Catholic School began its 85th school year with an enrollment of 330 students. 
   The school was started in 1930 by the Franciscan Sisters of Allegany, and is part of St. Paul's Parish in St. Petersburg, FL. Since the beginning, there has been a constant Allegany Franciscan presence at the school. Currently, Sr. Joan Carberry serves as Vice Principal, with Sr. Kathleen Stagnaro, former Principal, teaching education once a week for grades three through five.
   Pictured is the banner that was displayed during the start of the 2014-2015 academic school year. Each year the pastor, Msgr. Robert Gibbons, arranges for a banner to be hung on the outside of the school building. Msgr. Gibbons is extremely supportive of the congregation's mission, and in gratitude for the Alleganies' continued commitment to the education of children at St. Paul's, designed this year's banner in recognition of the congregation's 85 years of service.
People's Climate March to take place during UN Climate Summit

   With the United Nations meeting on September 23 in New York City to discuss climate change and action that must be taken to reduce emissions, strengthen climate resilience, and bring about meaningful global cooperation to protect the environment, a coalition of groups has banded together to organize a march two days prior. 
   Called The People's Climate March, the event is expected to be the largest demonstration on climate change action in history, with support from over 750 organizations worldwide. 
   The event's website says "With our future on the line and the whole world watching, we'll take a stand to bend the course of history. We'll take to the streets to demand the world we know is within our reach: a world with an economy that works for people and the planet; a world safe from the ravages of climate change; a world with good jobs, clean air and water, and healthy communities." 
   The March will take place on September 21 at 11:30 a.m., and will begin in the area north of Columbus Circle in New York City. 
   In preparation for the People's Climate March, Franciscan Action Network is hosting a climate webinar on September 4. More information can be found here.
   For additional information on the March, visit

FAN Event as part of Climate Summit 
Transforming the World in the Spirit of St. Francis and St. Clare of Assisi
   Franciscan Action Network (FAN) recognizes and promotes the moral obligation of all people of faith to care for the gift of God's creation. As such, we would like to raise the profile of the faith community's support of efforts for sound and equitable climate agreements in the UN.
   FAN is organizing an interfaith panel discussion on Monday, September 22 from 7 to 8:30 p.m. at San Damiano Hall, located at Church of St. Francis of Assisi, 135 W. 31st Street, between 6th and 7th Avenues
   Confirmed speakers include Br. Eduardo Agosta Scarel from Argentina, Shelley Tanenbaum, the General Secretary for Quaker Earthcare Witness, Fletcher Harper, Executive Director of GreenFaith, and Patrick Carolan, Executive Director of FAN.
  To RSVP, email or call (202) 527-7575.
 From the Archives
Heritage Room Taking Shape

   As the finishing touches are put on the renovations at the Motherhouse, my favorite part of my job is about to begin. I can begin the process of displaying objects and other archival material in the new Heritage Room! As you can see, in the cabinet on the right, the dolls that are modeling various habits are already on display, complete with small signs explaining the history and design of each habit. In the cabinet on the left, a beautiful statue of Maria Bambina, recently donated to the Archives by Sr. Mary Lawrence, looks stunning under the lights. Between the two cabinets, you can see a desk that belonged to Rev. Mother Teresa O'Neil herself!
   I'm very excited to bring the history of the Congregation out of the storeroom and into a space where it can safely be enjoyed by everyone! I hope that you'll come and visit when it is complete! Stay tuned for further updates.

Ellen Winger, 
Congregational Archivist


 Retreat Opportunities
Experiencing the Incarnation through Spiritual Companioning: A Scriptural Foundation
A retreat for spiritual directors and those who companion others in the Franciscan Tradition. 

Offered by: The Franciscan Center
February 23-27, 2015
Guided by: Nancy Schreck, OSF
Cost: $475 before January 30, 2015
         $500 after January 30, 2015

For more information contact Karen Davies, (813) 229-2695 or email

Upcoming deadlines: 

September 3 - First September edition e-newsletter
September 17 - Second September edition e-newsletter