by Sister Julie Myers, OSF
In our current society religious life is considered a unique way of living. There are many people who don’t even know what a nun or sister is let alone why anyone would choose this lifestyle. Then there are individuals who express full knowledge of our life and challenge our choices and ways of living. That is the very reason so many religious congregations have established websites and joined the world of social media—to share their life and tell their story. It is a great way of making a congregation’s charism known and certainly a powerful way of taking the gospel message to where people are today.
I currently minister at A Nun’s Life Ministry which was started 11 years ago by two IHM Sisters of Monroe (Sr Maxine Kollasch and Sr Julie Vieira). The ministry began as a blog—two years after Facebook launched and the same year Twitter was born. The blog was written in a format that allowed the sister writers to share the true charism of religious life and how it is lived with diversity and joy in today’s world. This blog grew quite rapidly into what it is today a full online ministry with not only blogs but a creative website, podcasts, chatroom, resources and various social media platforms. It is where we bring Catholic sisters into conversation with the online community, sharing the centuries-old tradition of religious life in areas like prayer, spirituality, God, life and discernment that people can bring to bear on their own lives.
As I write, I am preparing for a road trip with my ministry team! This is not just any ol’ road trip either. It is the 33rd Motherhouse Road Trip (MRT) sponsored by A Nun’s Life Ministry and supported by the GHR foundation. Our team takes the Ask Sister podcast on the road where we visit all sorts of religious congregations—cloistered, contemplative, monastic, evangelical, and apostolic. Two sisters from the congregation serve as guest nuns on the podcast and engage in conversation with the A Nun’s Life host.
Our goal is to share with the online audience the different congregations and how they live their particular charism through the gift of vowed life. The sisters share their vocational story, experience of prayer, ministry, community and how they have witnessed the hand of God upon their lives. In turn, the online audience has the opportunity to learn about the congregation, experience the human side of sisters and hear first-hand their lived experience, knowledge and wisdom as it comes alive through conversation.
Women religious continue to go where the people are and in today’s world that is out into the world of social media. Sisters provide a positive and spiritual presence there. So, I encourage you to visit us, the Sylvania Franciscans—go to our website and our various social platforms to more closely experience who we are and what we are about. It is a great opportunity to get to know us better and to be absorbed into our Franciscan charism. Get to know us, you’ll grow to love us!!