Hospital Sisters of the Third Order Regular of St. Francis
I was born on January 2, 1943 in Bogota, Illinois and am the youngest of six children (four girls and two boys). My childhood memories are of farming, especially in thrashing, baling hay and butchering. As a teenager, I enjoyed helping my mother working in the garden and with our variety of flowers and we became quite a team in getting things done.
From the age of six, I knew I wanted to be a religious Sister and God led me along the way. I entered the Hospital Sisters of St. Francis on September 1, 1962, and professed first vows on September 8, 1965. I am a graduate of Springfield School of Practical Nursing, hold an Associate’s Degree in Gerontology from Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College, and received clinical pastoral care education from Christian Northeast Hospital and Alexian Brothers Health System. My assignments include St. John’s Hospital (Springfield, Illinois), St. Joseph’s Home for the Infirm and Aged (Monroe, Louisiana), St. Francis Convent (Springfield, Illinois), Illini House (Springfield, Illinois), Franciscan Apostolic Center (Springfield, Illinois), House of Prayer (Henry, Illinois), St. Francis Hospital (Litchfield, Illinois), and from 1994-2014 at St. Joseph’s Hospital (Highland, Illinois).
For the past five years, I have served as the Loretto Home (the retirement community at the Motherhouse) Leader and this is a continuation of my ministry throughout my religious life of caring for the elderly. One of my greatest treasures is being with our elderly Sisters whose wisdom and experiences are a blessing. These Sisters have reassured me of the importance of knowing God and serving God in all that I do.
My philosophy is simple: make my work a prayer and be aware of God’s helping hand in all that I do. From my work with grief and cancer support groups, I am reminded how fragile life is and to enjoy and live each day of life to the fullest. Years ago when I was working in a nursing home, one of the patients said to me ‘Sister every time you go by the door it’s like God goes by.’ This made me realize the importance of being present and I encourage others to be mindful and do the same.