WelCom March 2019:
In January, Our Lady of the Missions Sisters from the Palmerston North Diocese – Sr Constance Hurley, Sr Ann Martin and Sr Therese Kowalewski – celebrated jubilees of religious life and service – Sr Constance, 75 years; Sr Ann, 60 years; and Sr Therese, 70 years.
At a Eucharist in Christchurch, Sr Constance of New Plymouth celebrated her platinum jubilee on 6 January with three other Sisters. People from the area and Sisters from all over the country joined the thanksgiving.
Sr Constance was involved in education in primary and secondary schools and in the Hamilton Diocese as a Director of Religious Education, for over 40 years. She also served in the ANZS (Aotearoa New Zealand and Samoa) Province of the Sisters leadership team. She was manager of the Palmerston North Pastoral Centre in 1990 and lived and worked in Wellington for several years. She was involved at Challenge 2000 as a ‘grandmother figure’ to many young people and moved to New Plymouth in 2017.
Sr Ann Martin celebrated her diamond jubilee at Mass at Our Lady of Lourdes Church, Palmerston North, on 9 January. She was joined by several Mission Sisters and her family. Fr Joseph Grayland spoke about Sr Ann’s witness to God’s love on her faith journey. For over 20 years Sr Ann served Sisters in convents and served many years in parish ministry in Motueka, Panmure, Dannevirke, Napier and Nelson. She moved to Palmerston North in 1999. Sr Carmel Cole, Province Leader, warmly congratulated Sr Ann. After Mass, everyone enjoyed lunch in the parish hall.
Sr Therese Kowalewski celebrated her platinum jubilee on 11 January at a parish Mass and gathering in Stratford, joined by family members, Sisters and local parishioners. Fr Craig Butler celebrated the Eucharist. Sr Colleen Edgecombe’s reading reflections spoke of the Christian call to share God’s love with everyone. Sr Therese spent most of her life as a schoolteacher in the upper part of the North Island and around the Taranaki area. Since 1986 she has lived in Stratford offering a prayerful presence in the community. Sr Carmel Cole congratulated Therese and gave her a papal blessing, which had been organised by her family. Lunch was shared in the parish hall.
Together, these six Sisters of Our Lady of the Missions have celebrated a total 380 years of consecrated life.