July 3, 2023 | Vocations, Your Stories
Fr. Stephen Van Lal Than

A Glenmary Sisters Missionary Volunteer from the Sisters of Notre Dame in Covington, Ky., works at Little Miracles Center in September 2019. COURTESY OF SUE BROWN

Glenmary Sisters invite women 30+ to join volunteer missionary program


Missionary work is a vital part of the life of the Church. We are all called to be missionaries in some way. Pope Francis, in his message for World Mission Day 2019 entitled “Baptized and Sent: The Church of Christ on Mission in the World” states that, “I am a mission, always, you are a mission, always; every baptized man and woman is a mission.” He goes on to emphasize how we as baptized Catholics are missionaries by means of our baptism. We each have a missionary mandate from the Church which ultimately flows from the command given to us by Christ Jesus.

Not all missionaries are called to go directly into the missions, however. St. Thérèse of Lisieux is a prime example. She lived her missionary calling in the monastery. She was never able to go physically into a mission area and serve. However, she was named by the Church as Patroness of the Missions because she lived her calling as a missionary so well in prayer and sacrifice.

The Glenmary Sisters have been given the call to serve actively in the missions. Their charism of Catholic presence has been the backbone of their mission ministry since their founding by Fr. William Howard Bishop in 1941. The sisters spread the love of God throughout their missions by sharing their gifts and talents with people who are underserved, oppressed, and unchurched. They offer compassionate outreach to all those they meet in the mission areas where they serve in Kentucky and Missouri.

Some non-professed, lay, single women are also able to minister physically in a mission area and are being called to share their time and talents as active missionaries – but may be unsure how best to serve.

The Glenmary Sisters are offering opportunities for single women, age 30+, to minister with them in the mission fields of the United States in rural southern areas. Each volunteer lives with one of the sisters and serves that particular mission area for up to three months. This allows for ample opportunity to perform the Corporal and Spiritual Works of Mercy. The volunteer discerns with the sisters her particular gifts and talents and implements them in best meeting the needs of the mission area to which she is assigned.

Some areas of need in the mission in which you could possibly share your gifts and talents may include: working at our outreach centers which minister to young mothers and children, religious education, summer Bible School, helping with youth groups during the summer, Hispanic ministry, helping gather and distribute Thanksgiving and Christmas baskets, taking Communion to the sick and shut-ins, and literacy programs, to name a few.

If you are discerning a tug in your heart from the Holy Spirit to spend some time in the missions, the Glenmary Sisters Missionary Volunteer Program may be a perfect fit for you.

Always remember that you will meet God in the lives of the people whom you serve. You will be forever touched and will grow in your own faith life as you go forth to follow the promptings of the Holy Spirit by answering “yes” to serve the missions with the Glenmary Sisters.

Glenmary Sisters Missionary Volunteers work at St. Joseph Parish in Mechanicsbur, Penn., in this undated photo. COURTESY OF SUE BROWN

For more information about this opportunity, contact Barbara O’Nan by emailing [email protected], or calling 706-414-2982. You can also visit https://glenmarysisters.org for more details.

Barbara O’Nan is the volunteer coordinator for the Glenmary Sisters.

Current Issue

Publisher |  Bishop William F. Medley
Editor |  Elizabeth Wong Barnstead
Contributors |  Riley Greif, Rachel Hall
Layout |  Rachel Hall
Send change of address requests to [email protected]