Celebrating years of service

Sisters of St Francis Julilee

There are eight members of the Sisters of St. Francis of Sylvania, Ohio, celebrating anniversaries of professed religious life in 2018. The service of these Sisters represents a total of 485 years of “living the Gospel in joyful servanthood among all people.”

75 Year Jubilarian

Sister M. Alicia and Sister M. Lenore Eagles

Twin sisters, Sister Alicia and Sister Lenore entered the convent together in 1935 after having been taught by the Sylvania Franciscans at Nativity Parish in Toledo. Both Sisters earned degrees in English and social studies from the former Mary Manse College in Toledo and taught in elementary schools in Michigan, Minnesota and Ohio, but never at the same school at the same time.
Sisters Alicia and Lenore, who will be 96 in December, spent 26 years caring for their parents and sister before entering Rosary Care Center in 2008 where they spend their days praying for the needs of others. Proud to be the oldest Sisters in the community, they both remember fondly their teaching days.

60 Year Jubilarians

Sister Barbara Ann Borkowski

Sister Eve Marie Korzym

Sister Jane Mary Sorosiak

Sister M. Nathaniel Eisel

Sister Patricia Ann Taube

50 Year Jubilarians

Sister Judith Ann Zielinski

Sister Ann Lorette entered the Sylvania Franciscan community from SS. Peter and Paul in Detroit, where she was taught by the Sisters of St. Francis. Sister earned a bachelor’s degree in education and spent 47 years teaching kindergarten and first grade at schools mostly in Ohio, with two brief stops in Michigan and Minnesota.
Sister Ann Lorette is currently working in the activities department at the Franciscan Care Center on Holland Sylvania in Toledo. She continues to bring her teacher’s peaceful presence, listening ear and caring heart to the residents and staff with whom she interacts each day.

Sister Nancy Ann Surma

Sister Claudia (formerly Sister Mary Marvin) has ministered the last 50 years in a variety of capacities in Michigan, North Carolina and Ohio. She spent the first 13 years as an elementary school teacher before moving into pastoral work in parishes, including nine years with the Diocese of Raleigh in North Carolina, where she ministered at three different parishes as a campus minister and director of faith formation.
Sister Claudia entered the Sylvania Franciscans from St. Charles Parish in Detroit and received degrees from Lourdes Junior College in Sylvania and Mary Manse College in Toledo. Sister enjoys life and people to the fullest, turning each day over to God’s hands.

Sister Diana Lynn Eckel

Sister Diana Lynn (formerly Sister Mary Brian) ministered for 38 years in education, from elementary school teacher and counselor to principal and consultant. As principal, she helped create the new school and parish of St. Joan of Arc in Toledo and helped merge two parishes in Rossford, Ohio, creating the new parish of All Saints where she ministered as principal for 12 years.
Sister Diana Lynn served as Congregational Minister from 2004 to 2012, during which time she created the Sylvania Franciscan Village, bringing more closely together the Sisters’ healthcare ministry and Lourdes University, their education sponsored ministry.

Sister Martha Herkness

Sister Martha has ministered in a variety of ways over the past 50 years. She received a degree in nursing from Lourdes College in Sylvania and spent her first 19 years at Providence Hospital in Sandusky, Ohio and Holy Cross Hospital in Detroit. She then used her talents in medical records, counseling, retreat assistant, print shop manager and purchasing director.
Sister has had some health challenges since 2001 and now spends her time living at the Motherhouse writing poetry and refurbishing wooden walking sticks that are sold in All Good Things, the Franciscan art and gift shop on the campus.

Sister Mary Frances Reichenberger

Sister Mary Fran (formerly Sister Mary Eymard) entered the community from Minneapolis where she had been taught by the Sylvania Franciscans. Sister spent her early years teaching elementary school in Michigan and Ohio and then ministered in religious education for another 10 years in the Minneapolis area.
Sister also served as vocation director of the Sylvania Franciscans before going back to school for her master’s degree in social work. Sister Mary Fran has served as a psychologist in the Diocese of St. Cloud in Minnesota for the last 18 years counseling individuals and families.

Sister Rosine Sobczak

Sister Rosine (formerly Sister Diane Rose) has been an ecologist her whole life. When not teaching science classes at Lourdes University, where she has helped students for almost 40 years better understand the world we live in, she is involved with SAVE (Science Alliance for Valuing the Environment), a group she co-founded 25 years ago to link environmental issues with spirituality.
Born and raised in Toledo and educated by the Sisters of St. Francis, Sister Rosine credits her Franciscanism for her intense interest and passion for the Universe and helping people understand how we are all interconnected and need to work together for the sake of Mother Earth.

Sister Valerie Grondin

Sister Valerie (formerly Sister Mary Sixtus) was inspired to join the community by the Sylvania Franciscans who taught her at St. Mary’s High School in Sandusky, Ohio. Sister earned a bachelor’s degree in social studies; a master’s in teaching mathematics and a Ph.D. in Catholic education leadership and spent 40 years as a teacher and principal at schools in the Toledo area, Michigan and Minnesota.
Sister Valerie is currently an associate professor in education at Lourdes University on the Motherhouse grounds in Sylvania. She volunteers at a local soup kitchen and currently serves on the board of the Toledo Diocese Catholic Charities and the parish council of St. Patrick Historic in downtown Toledo.