Little things can have a big impact
When I was a boy visiting my grandparents in Portsmouth, Ohio, I always enjoyed riding with my grandfather to take donated bread to the cloistered Sisters at St. Joseph’s Adoration Monastery. He’d drive his old Chevrolet up the brick-lined street to the monastery, which sat at the top of a hill overlooking the city. It was a volunteer trip he’d make a couple of times a week and he did it for years. To a kid, it was just cool that grandpa helped the nuns.
Likewise, my grandmother volunteered at a consignment store that benefitted the local hospital. The hospital’s friends group ran the store for decades until it was closed and the building razed about five years ago. The shop, which mostly sold clothes, raised thousands of dollars for the hospital over the years. My grandmother bustled about the shop, enjoying her work immensely because she wanted to help.
These memories recently came alive again one Sunday as our local pastor reflected on a reading from Mark in which Jesus sent the apostles out to “proclaim repentance” and anoint the sick and cure them. In essence, the pastor said, the apostles were told to build the kingdom of God and make a difference in people’s lives.
That story reminds me of our responsibility to not only spread God’s word, but to serve others and in some small way help them improve their lives. It can be as complex as generating employment in an impoverished area or as simple as being a friend to someone who is lonely. Regardless of resources, time constraints and ability, we can all make that positive impact on those most in need.
That’s what my grandparents did. He helped build God’s kingdom simply by taking bread to the Sisters, while she touched the needy by helping raise money for the local hospital. We see thousands of examples of people opening their hearts to others. There isn’t a more fulfilling experience than offering your hand to someone going through a challenging time. What a blessing!
The Sisters of the Precious Blood and other women religious have been doing that for generations. Looking back over their ministries we see that Sisters have built schools, hospitals and Catholic parishes. They work in education, medicine, management and pastoral administration.
In this issue of Sharing and Caring we see how the Sisters of the Precious Blood today are living out God’s call and changing the way people live.
Deep in the hills of southeastern Kentucky Sister Margie Zureick has been reaching out to those in need – day by day – for more than 30 years. We also have an article on the Maria Anna Brunner Fund and how grants from the fund support Sisters in their various ministries. Finally, Our Lady of Kilimanjaro Sister M. Daria Mushi recently completed her medical training and returned to her native Tanzania to begin her ministry as doctor treating the poor.
In all they do, Sisters of the Precious Blood carry out God’s call to make a difference one person at a time.