Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Transforming Love

In my recent theological studies, I have spent some time examining the writings of two great spiritual figures in Church history. One of them is quite well known to the modern Catholic; the other is all but forgotten, as a person, in our day and age, yet his influence has found its way to our current understanding, especially in a Pauline context. Those two holy people are Saint Catherine of Siena and Blessed Guerric of Igny. 

Saint Catherine of Siena, Both Mystic & Political Arbitrator

"Saint Catherine of Siena writing" by Rutilio di Lorenzo Manetti
This is a faithful photographic reproduction
of a two-dimensional, public domain work of art.
This week, we celebrate the feast of Saint Catherine of Siena. She was born in the middle of the 14th century, an era of great turmoil in the Church and the world in general. Catherine is known as a great mystic and spiritual writer. She also is famous for her letters and visits to Pope Gregory XI, convincing him to return the papacy to Rome and end what became known as the Avignon Papacy. She was named a Doctor of the Church by Pope Paul VI in 1970, because of her exceptional holiness and her accomplishments as one of the greatest spiritual and theological writers of the Church.

While we are focusing here on some of her spiritual ideas, it is interesting to note some biographical information about the extraordinary Saint Catherine of Siena. She is another of those saints well known to most of the faithful, yet their knowledge of her usually does not go beyond the barest outlines of her biography.
She was an exceptionally devout woman who generously worked to help the poor and sick. She lived at a time when the Black Death was ravaging her home town of Siena and most of Europe. In her practices of deep contemplative prayer, she had many visions and other mystical experiences. Even as a small child, she reputedly had visions of Jesus, his mother and a number of biblical saints, including Saint Paul. We can see commonalities between Saint Paul and Saint Catherine in many of her writings, including two of her most famous sayings, “Be who God meant you to be and you will set the world on fire." and “The human heart is always drawn by love." (From her Dialogue  #26).

Her influence and accomplishments also extended to the political sphere of her era, where she earned a reputation for political boldness with the courage and determination to effect reform by “speaking truth to power.” Such boldness was especially remarkable for a woman of the 14th century!

Throughout her adult life, she became a well-known personality and developed a certain power base in the political world of her turbulent times. Yet, among her contemporaries of her home town of Siena, Catherine was known as a saintly woman and often called by a kind of nickname, Beata Popolana, “Blessed Child of the People”. This was a time in history when people known for holiness and great works of mercy became popular heroes and were treated as such by a devout and cheering public. Her popularity with the public grew and spread through Europe, and it was common for her to be met by crowds of devout "fans" during her travels.

Catherine wrote, "Love transforms one into what one loves." (From Dialogue #60) These words echo the Pauline sentiment of our founder, Blessed James Alberione. He said, “That my thoughts and my affections become always more humble and united to those of Jesus. Unite myself to him; let myself be transformed into Him. ” (1931)

Blessed Guerric of Igny, Monastic Evangelist of Citeaux

"Blessed Guerric of Igny",
attribution unknown.
Next, let me introduce you to Blessed Guerric. He was a Cistercian abbot and theologian who wrote 54 sermons on a variety of theological topics, including a variety of meditations in Christology, Ecclesiology, and Spirituality. He demonstrated a strong Mariological point of view in his writings.

At first glance, Blessed Guerric seems far removed from the realities of the 21
st century. Yet, he actually developed key Pauline concepts to provide a beautiful and fascinating understanding of faith and ongoing personal conversion to increasing holiness. His sophistication can have great appeal to the post-Vatican II believer.

Let us begin our brief visit with Blessed Guerric by journeying to a little town in Belgium, Tournai, near the modern-day French border. Tournai is known for its great cultural history, partly because of its architectural sites and because it is one of the oldest cities in Belgium. It was established by the ancient Romans as a stopping point on the road between Cologne and France. Later, in the early Middle Ages, it was chosen by the Frankish kings to be their capital. It was in this town where Blessed Guerric of Igny was born between 1070 and 1080 AD.
As an intellectual in the academic community, he became a believer in the monastic reform movement. After he heard about the reform work of Saint Bernard at Clairvaux, he journeyed there in 1120 to meet Saint Bernard. He ended up staying there and becoming a loyal protégé of Saint Bernard, who eventually assigned him to the Abbey of Igny, near Rheims, as its second abbot. Along with Saint Bernard, Aelred of Rievaulx, and William of St. Thierry, Blessed Guerric has been dubbed one of the “Four Evangelists of Citeaux.”
Guerric’s writings brought out his highly developed understanding not only of the Spiritual Maternity of Mary, but also of the maternity of the Church to the believers and the maternity and “birthing” of the believer through evangelization together with the action of the Spirit. "Faithful soul," writes Guerric, "open your breast very wide, expand your affection, fear to be confined in your heart! Conceive the one whom no creature can contain" (Sermon on the Annunciation.) He echoes Saint Paul when he speaks of the formation of the believer in terms of the spiritual maternity of the evangelizer and of the disciple being conceived and born in faith. In his sermon on the Nativity, he writes, "The child Jesus was born not only for us but in us. We have 'to conceive' God in our heart."

Catherine of Siena used the language of marriage in her descriptions of mystical experience. Blessed Guerric of Igny employed concepts of maternity and birthing to describe the soul's relationship with Christ. Both of these great figures lead us into the mind and heart of God through contemplation of the spiritual meaning of the commonest and most incarnational of human activities. What does that tell us about our human lives?

May my prayers, work, and study draw me ever closer to you, Lord, so that your presence will continue to grow in me and transform me to be more and more like you each day. Amen.


Marie-Louise Handal has been a Pauline Cooperator based in Manhattan, New York City, for 15 years. She has participated in organizing and hosting a number of Pauline Family special events, media presentations, and educational programs in the New York Archdiocese and environs. Her professional work experience encompasses 20 years in international banking and finance, followed by a second career as a mathematics educator in Manhattan. Marie-Louise is a native New Yorker, born and raised in New York City.

        Her advanced degrees include a Master’s Degree in Theology from St. Joseph's Seminary, a Master of Science in the Foreign Service (MSFS) from Georgetown University, and a B.A. in Mathematics & Science from Hunter College. She is currently a candidate for the S.T.L. from the International Marian Research Institute at the University of Dayton. She also holds a Certificate in Spiritual Direction from the New York Archdiocesan Center for Spiritual Development.

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Easter Joy, Five New Cooperator Candidates, and One New Cooperator

"Colorful spring garden"
Anita Martinz, with permission.
Happy Easter to all of you!  The Lord is Risen! Alleluia! 

I lived in Northern Virginia from age 10-15 and I fondly remember how beautiful the Spring flowers would be, especially in April.  The flowers would come in stages beginning with the purple, yellow and white crocuses, to the brilliant yellow daffodils and flowering forsythia bushes, and eventually the dogwood trees and rhododendron bushes that would burst in colors of pink, white and magenta. 

As St Paul said, “Eye has not seen, ear has not heard, what God has prepared for us!”  We cannot even imagine how glorious heaven will be, and after having experienced the beautiful Spring seasons in Virginia, I now and then try to imagine how beautiful the Eternal Garden will be for us.

In Culver City, we have a group of five new candidates who have completed their six months of inquiry and are in the beginning of their year of formation as Pauline Cooperators.  This too is a beautiful way for me to celebrate Spring here in Southern California! Sharing our Pauline Charism with new candidates brings me joy and hope in the Risen Jesus who brings us new life, joy and hope!

Now, let me introduce to you the five new candidates:

Mary Fido
Mary Fido (right) with her cousin,
Sr. Lusia Yvonne, fsp
Cooperator in Formation

Mary is the cousin of Sr Lusia Yvonne, a Daughter of St Paul from Samoa, who is stationed here in Culver City.  Mary is a data processor and also a teacher in the RCIA program at her parish. Mary has enjoyed the Hours of Adoration, as well as the time of sharing and learning during the period of inquiry.

Carmen Svenrud
Carmen is a regular attendee at our monthly Movie Bible nights.  She is also a Confirmation teacher and she completed the Media Literacy course offered by the Pauline Center for Media Studies here in Culver City.  Carmen is looking forward to the Pauline Cooperator Formation Program and becoming a Pauline Cooperator.

Sharon Hart
  Sharon Hart, Cooperator in Formation
Sharon was lead into the cooperator formation program through a confusion of a date. She thought she was coming to a retreat and found out that that the retreat was held the previous Saturday. I invited her to join us anyway and she was deeply moved by the beauty of the Pauline Hour of Adoration. She realized that it was not a mistake that she came on the wrong Saturday for the retreat! She loves growing in faith and evangelizing with others about her faith. Sharon is also a regular attendee at our monthly Movie Bible nights.

Purisima Narvaez
 Purisima Narvaez, Cooperator in Formation

I met Purisima Narvaez at a Marian retreat day at a local parish. I was giving a presentation on Mary and the Eucharist through the lens of the Pauline Spirituality and Mission. After the retreat, Purisima came up to me and said that she felt something stir inside and she wanted to know more about Pauline Spirituality and the Pauline Family. She has enjoyed learning about the Pauline Blesseds and Venerables and they inspire her to deepen her desire for Jesus.

Catherine Rodriguez
Catherine was invited to our cooperator formation by Christin Jezak, a promised cooperator who is an actress.  Catherine is a make up artist in Hollywood and she is enjoying the Pauline Cooperator formation and feels the support from Christin and the other Paulines here in the Los Angeles area.  Catherine has volunteered a couple times in our Pauline Book and Media Center.

Sandy Cunningham
Sandy Cunningham, Cooperator

Finally, and from the East Coast, we welcome with great joy our newest promised Cooperator, Sandy Cunningham. Sandy made her Cooperator Promise during Mass at the Church of the Immaculate Conception in Spotswood, New Jersey, in the presence of cooperators Maryann Toth and Betty Caunt, and Sr. Christine Virginia, fsp. Welcome to the newest Pauline Jersey Girl!


Sister Marie James Hunt entered the Daughters of St. Paul community in 1981. She is currently missioned in California, where she is the local superior of the Daughters of St. Paul in Culver City. Sr. Marie James is also the West Coast Coordinator of the Pauline Cooperators.

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

For the Love of Lent

"Lent -- I just can't get into it..."
Yes, there are people who love Lent! I don’t know about you, but I am not one of them. I am delighted that Lent is progressing along toward its appointed end. But, I have to ask myself if Easter itself will mean anything to me if I have failed to appreciate the days of Lent. Why am I so ambivalent about this particular Season?

Celebrating the Feast of the Resurrection of Jesus is not a problem; I “rejoice with those who rejoice” at His victory, but does it really touch me? And, will Easter touch me as it should if I haven’t felt the discomfort of Lent? If I haven’t experienced even the smallest suffering of penance, can I really feel any genuine Easter joy?

"Okay I'll watch, okay I'll pray.
Now what?"
Perhaps I am excusing myself now for such thoughts by imagining that I am satisfied with just the joy of group celebration: we rejoice together as a community, as a parish, as a family. But now while I am thinking about how I am “doing” Lent, it is dawning on me that I am missing something. Lent is a recurring season, so could there be a plan to it? What can I compare it to in order to help myself better understand it?

Well, it is Spring and that means only one thing to many people: it is the beginning of another season, the baseball season! Every year the various players come together for a preseason of practice. They spend just about the same amount of time preparing for their season as we spend with Lent. Why do they take all this time and expend all this energy every single year? If you were a good player last year, won’t you be a good player again this year? Those who follow the game religiously know the answer to that question.  And, at best, the answer is “iffy.” Players need time to stretch their muscles, tune up their reflexes, challenge their motivation and endurance, but more than that they need to bond with their teammates and enter once more into the culture of the game.

Spring training for the athlete; spring training for the soul?
Used with permission, wikicommons, by Terry Foote -
Sliding into third, CC BY-SA 2.0, 

This is also the wisdom of the Church in making us go through a period of “spring training” each year. We need to test our readiness once again. This is a chance to stand with Jesus in His time of testing, and to stand in for Jesus with our own time of testing. For Christians it is the process of growing in wisdom, age, and grace like Jesus. We are talking about the normal steps to maturity - in this case, the maturity of our Christian commitment. Slackers aren’t successful on a ball team and the disciples of Jesus can’t expect to be faithful followers of His if they don’t put in the time and effort. That is the purpose of Lent. It is a boot camp for believers! If following Jesus was a simple matter of the will, without any effort, we wouldn’t need Lent. But, we are blessed with these forty days each year to concentrate on building up the life of Christ within us.

Well, well, well, I might have just thought myself into a love affair with Lent. God be praised!

Sister Mary Lea Hill, a member of the Daughters of St. Paul since 1964, has enjoyed communicating the faith through a variety of apostolic assignments. Her skills as a story teller were honed as director of audiovisual productions when Pauline Books & Media first produced animated features in the early 80s. An editor and author for many years, Sister Mary Lea has written several books, including Prayer and You, Blessed are the Stressed, Saints Alive: The Gospel Witnessed, Saints Alive: The Faith Proclaimed, and the best-selling Basic Catechism (co-authored with Sister Susan Helen Wallace).

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

The Shack—A Poetic Retreat

Lent is a perfect time to take stock of our lives and examine our hearts on the Gospel values that Jesus teaches us in the Scriptures. Namely, “love one another as I have loved you” (Jn. 13:34); “Forgive… and your heavenly Father will forgive you” (cf. Mt. 6:14). Those are the passages that are easy to gloss over and believe that we are doing just that. But as I take time in silence to meditate and reflect on what Jesus truly asks of his disciples I’m shocked into awareness. For me to forgive another person for the pain and suffering they caused me, I realize I must first forgive myself for becoming angry with them, hardening my heart towards them and holding onto my grudge like a licked wound. What does it really mean to forgive? How can God expect this of us weak and pathetically-frightened-of-conflict human beings?

Movies, just like the Scripture, help me to meditate profoundly on my life, my actions and my purpose. They challenge me, if I let them, to look to the depths of my emotions and artistic sense where my spiritual values lie. Movies have that power. Just as does poetry and art. They help me to delve into a spiritual realm quite beyond where my rational, pragmatic personality usually directs me.

Mack’s retreat into the woods offers him respite from his grief
to meditate on the beauty and gift of life, love and forgiveness. 
The Shack did this for me. I never read the book all the way through because it did not touch me like the movie did. Mack Philips (Sam Worthington) reels in anguish when his young daughter is kidnapped and killed on a family camping trip. He blames himself and falls into depression and isolation from his other children and his wife. He receives a suspicious note in his mailbox one snowy night saying to come to the shack on the weekend. That shack is the place of his daughter’s murder. He goes and unsuspectingly meets Love. He encounters God presented in a way that speaks to the core of our souls, through a poetic vision of the Trinitarian God—Father, Son and Holy Spirit, represented as Papa (Octavia Spencer), Jesus (Aviv Alush) and Sarayu (Sumire Matsubara). He spends time with God trying to understand the complexities of life, the problem of suffering, the questions of grief and the difficulties of forgiveness.

Mack’s retreat into the woods, in the shack, offers him a desperately needed respite from his grief to meditate on the beauty and gift of life, love and forgiveness. He is transformed from a frightened, broken-down man, to a serene and loving father and husband. It was his Lenten journey to authentic interior freedom. That’s what forgiveness does. It frees us. And when we are truly free is when we are genuinely happy. Our Lenten journey can be a time to mediate on our need for God’s mercy, forgiveness of ourselves and others. Viewing The Shack can be a gift you give yourself to lead you into a poetic retreat reflecting upon this freedom of forgiveness.

Sr. Nancy Usselmann is a Daughter of St. Paul, the Director of the Pauline Center for Media Studies in Los Angeles and a Media Literacy Education Specialist. She has degrees in Communications Arts and a Masters in Theology and Arts. For over 25 years, Sr. Nancy has given numerous media mindfulness workshops, presentations and film retreats around the country to youth, young adults, catechists, seminarians, teachers and media professionals helping them to create the dialogue between faith and media. She is a contributing writer for Fuller's Reel Spirituality website and a board member of CIMA (Catholics in Media Associates), a member of NAMLE (National Association of Media Literacy Educators) and SIGNIS (International Organization for Media)

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

“If you had been here, my brother would not have died.”

I don’t like being blown off. I mean sometimes life happens and people have to change their plans. Of course.  Sometimes crises happen. But sometimes people are just unreliable and whatever catches their eye at the moment seems more important than the plans they had made with me. And that makes me angry. And sometimes I’m the one having a crisis and I expect that people will drop other things to help me.
Fortunately, Jesus will always be there when we need him, right? Well, of course we’re supposed to say yes, but it sure doesn’t always feel that way. In this Sunday’s gospel, Mary and Martha and Lazarus are good friends of Jesus. And then Lazarus gets sick. Very sick. Dangerously sick. Mary and Martha send word to Jesus for help. “Lord, the one you love is ill.” This is crisis time. Of course Jesus will drop everything and come to help them. This is Jesus. You can always count on Jesus.
Except he doesn’t.
St. Lazarus between Martha and Mary
Maestro de Perea - Public Domain,
He waits for two days before heading to Bethany. What was he doing? What was so important that he didn’t go straight to Bethany? The Gospel doesn’t say. But Jesus waits for two days before going to his friends who were begging for his help. By that point Lazarus is already dead. By the time Jesus finally shows up, Lazarus has been dead for four days.  They needed Jesus and he didn’t show up and now it’s too late.
Jewish mourning customs involve a very quick burial and then a week of mourning afterwards, when the community gathers around to support and care for the grieving family. Jesus shows up when that week of mourning is more than half over. Too little, too late.
The sisters know this and they’re angry. Mary doesn’t even come out to meet him.  Martha does, and gives him a piece of her mind. “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died.”
Resurrection of Lazarus
Giovanni di Paolo - Public Domain

He walks Martha through a conversation on the Resurrection and she sends for her sister. Mary too has something to say to Jesus. “Lord if you had been here, my brother would not have died.” What is the point of being close to Jesus if he isn’t there when you most need him?

But Jesus has something else in mind. Now he’s going to work his greatest miracle, he’s going to demonstrate the glory of God and show that he has been sent by his father, in front of all these angry, hurting, grieving people he calls out to this man who has been dead for days “Lazarus, come out!” And he does. They unbind him from his burial cloths and he is free and alive and many people believe in Jesus.

So that’s terrific, right? Mary and Martha were wrong to doubt him, you can always count on Jesus he will always be there when you need him. The only reason he didn’t come when Lazarus was sick was because he had something even better in store. And really they only had to wait four days, that isn’t so bad. Trust in Jesus and he’ll make everything work out!
Except that isn’t quite the end of the story. Because in the next chapter we learn that the chief priests were none too happy about so many people coming to believe in Jesus so they plotted to kill Lazarus. They needed to get this walking talking testament to Jesus’ power out of the way. Get him back in the grave. The Gospel doesn’t say whether their plot was successful, but usually when the chief priests plotted to kill someone they managed to end up doing it.
And this time he stayed dead. Jesus did not come back to work his miracle again. This time his grieving sisters would have to wait for the resurrection on the last day.
Sometimes in our most difficult times we can palpably feel God’s comforting presence. Sometimes things just seem to work themselves out in ways that feel almost miraculous. Sometimes they don’t. Sometimes Lazarus stays dead. And Jesus seems to taking his sweet time doing who-knows-what before coming to you in your pain and fear and grief.
Martha knew the answer though, even in the midst of her grief. Martha said to him, “I know he will rise, in the resurrection on the last day.” In between now and then, all sorts of things can happen. Maybe things will work out for the best or maybe they will be as bad as they can be. Maybe we will be able to sense God’s comforting presence or maybe he will seem a million miles away. But we know how the story ends, and whatever we have to endure along the way, we know that we will rise in the resurrection on the last day.


Kristen Filipic has been involved with the Pauline family since 2010 and completed the Cooperator Formation program in 2014.  She is a native Midwesterner but has lived in Boston for the last twelve years, where she works as a civil rights attorney.  She serves as a lector and a Bible study leader in her home church.

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Positive Lenten Practices

" In a flash, at a trumpet crash, I am all at once what Christ is, since he is what I am, and this Jack, joke, poor potsherd patch, matchwood, immortal diamond is immortal diamond."
Gerard Manley Hopkins

The word Lent comes from the Anglo-Saxon word lencten, referring to the lengthening of days in the spring. In Lent, our own spring cleaning and growth happens through personal encounter with Christ, says liturgical leader Sr. Margaret Mary Tapang, Sister Disciple of the Divine Master (a Pauline religious institute.) The word mystica explains the profound, dynamic spiritual experience that leads to conversion or metanoia, enabling us to spring to “life in Christ in the Spirit” (Rm. 8:2).  True conversion is nurtured by life centered on Christ: Eucharistic Master, Priest, and Liturgy. Prayer, reading of Sacred Scripture, and celebration of the Sacraments enable us to reach the goal of christification: “It is no longer I who live; Christ lives in me” (Gal 2:20). “God wants to rest in us, he wants to renew nature also through our conversion, he wants to make us participants in his divinity,” says Benedict XVI.

The rhythm of our daily life is so frenetic that we wonder if we even have “time” for conversion. Not to worry. God has time for us. God gives us his time by entering history with his word and his works of salvation, opening it to eternity and making time a history of covenant. Lenten liturgical time deepens our experience of mystica for an ongoing metanoia. Our Lenten sacrifice is to draw near to the One who loves us so much.

Here are some Positive Lenten Practices

Become Holy: In Hebrew, the verb to sacrifice literally means “to draw near” or "to make holy."  It is not up to us to renounce our lives, but it is up to us to draw near to the Lord Who makes us holy. [1]  The Spirit give us the perseverance to walk in newness of life so we can live in God. Father Guido, Society of St. Paul (another Pauline religious institute,) reminds us that Blessed Alberione insisted on positive sacrifice. For Alberione, all is oriented toward “developing one’s energies and putting them at the service of the glory of God and for souls ... [Lenten penance is] an effort to keep far from evil and to progress in virtue. It is renunciation, detachment, crucifixion, interior death. At the same time, it is a conquest, elevation, new life, true sanctification, resurrection, an education for the will, a setting out towards Heaven."

Prayerfully Read the Scriptures: The word of God is the creative power which transforms us into Christ. St Athanasius tells us, “The Word became man so that man might become God.” Is the word of God truly the nourishment we live by, even more than bread and the things of this world? Do we really know that word? Do we love it? Are we deeply engaged with God’s word to the point that it leaves a mark on our lives and shapes our thinking? Or is our thinking is constantly being shaped by all the things that others say and do? (cf. Benedict XVI). Here are two ways to deepen your love for God’s letter to us:

 •Sr. Margaret Mary Tapang, sddm, hosts a
Lectio Divina site for sacred reading of the scriptures: Breaking the Bread of the Word

  •A Bible Enthronement ceremony in your home is a great reminder that God is present and active through his word. Here is a ceremony you may use:

Adore and Give Thanks: The Latin term for adoration, ad-oratio, implies physical contact, a kiss, an embrace, all implicit in love. In Eucharistic adoration, we give thanks for a love which knows no measure. Eucharistic adoration is union with the living Lord and His mystical Body the Church (cf. Benedict XVI). The Second Vatican Council rightly proclaimed the Eucharistic sacrifice “source and summit of the Christian life.”  The gaze of the Church is constantly turned to her Lord, present in the Sacrament of the Altar, where she discovers the full manifestation of his boundless love. In Adoration, God works for our holiness. Saint John Paul II said in order to evangelize the world, we need experts in thanksgiving, celebration, adoration and contemplation of the Holy Eucharist.

Fast from Self-Seeking:  Encourage one another! There is no human being who does not need encouragement, who does not need a person who smiles at them, who treats them as a son and daughter of God is to be treated. Fast from self-seeking in order to encourage others. Every word of encouragement or of consolation that I say is a word of the Spirit. In encouragement, we restore others, repair injury and ask pardon just as Jesus restored people to wholeness. God transforms and enters into our world so that there truly is a river of goodness greater than all the evil that could ever exist. God invites us to join Him, to leave the ocean of evil, hate, violence, and selfishness and to identify ourselves with Him and enter into the river of His love (cf. Benedict XVI). We fast from desiring what others have in the way of gifts and talents by encouraging the good we see. “Rejoice always,” advocates Paul, “pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus”(1 Thes.5: 16-18). As we encourage others, our words become God’s Word.

Through Mass and adoration, we become Eucharist, blessed and broken for others. In meditating on the Scripture we grow into God's Word. In our fasting, we become food for the poor. Through our prayer, we continue to open ourselves to the experience of mystica for our ongoing metanoia.
Blessed Lent!

[1] Abraham J. Heschel, God in Search of Man  (Borla Press in Italian)


 Sr. Margaret Kerry, FSP, celebrates 40 years of life and mission as a Daughter of St. Paul. With a Masters from Boston College School of Theology & Ministry, she gives presentations on the vocation and mission of the laity, media literacy, and evangelization. She directed the Association of Pauline Cooperators for 15 years and was creative editor of The Pauline Cooperator magazine. An author (St. Anthony of Padua: Fire & Light; Strength in Darkness: John of the Cross), Sr. Margaret is working on a young adult book. You can reach her at