Monday, January 18, 2010

Women & Spirit

I had the privilege of attending the opening of the Women & Spirit: Catholic Sisters in America exhibit at the Smithsonian on January 15 in Washington, DC. The exhibit is sponsored by the Leadership Conference of Women Religious (LCWR) and grew out of an idea born about five years ago.

My cousin, Honora Precourt, was the development coordinator for this LCWR History Project. It is difficult to put into words the impact this historic and spiritual exhibit will have on viewers! This stunning exhibit was done with professional help from Seruto & Company (who worked with the King Tut exhibit) based on history from archivists of religious communities across our nation. It is the story of women’s leadership in healthcare, education, social service and justice at a time when few women enjoyed such possibilities. It reveals the mystery behind committed women who helped shape our nation’s social, cultural and spiritual landscape.

I was thrilled to see a picture of Sisters from St. Benedict’s Monastery in St. Joseph, Minn., who worked with American Indian children as well as seeing our monastery listed under sponsors of this project. The exhibit debuted in Cincinnati, Ohio, and will travel to New York City and Dubuque, Iowa. I hope you will be able to see this outstanding exhibit of religious life which was and continues to be a viable lifestyle for many women!

Contributed by Anita O'Keefe, OSB

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