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Sisters embrace education in preparation for ministry

At the Provincial Chapter in July, Provincial Councilor Joan Gallagher, SP, introduced a panel of newer members who have been attending school this year. The audience was delighted to hear about their studies and how they are working to prepare themselves for future ministries. The following were on the panel:

  • Sister Vilma Franco, who was a part-time student taking business and computer classes at Spokane Falls Community College, in Spokane.  She has worked part-time in early childhood education at St. Aloysius School in Spokane, where she lived for nine years. Now in Seattle, she plans to seek further education to prepare to work with people, perhaps in human resources management. One of her dreams is going back to El Salvador.  
  • Sister Marcia Gatica, who is working toward a degree in human psychology from The University of Central America (UCA) in San Salvador, El Salvador She hopes to work in social justice, perhaps as a community coordinator for migrants.
  • Sister Margarita Hernandez, who recently completed the coursework and tests to earn a degree in pastoral ministry that she will receive in December from the Mexican American Catholic College and the University of Incarnate Word, in San Antonio, Texas. Because of transfer of credits and hard work, she finished the four-year program in two years and one semester and had the pleasure of living with the Sisters of Divine Providence. She took her classes, some taught in English and some in Spanish, in two places, and some of the classes had all seminarians. She was one of the first Salvadoran recipients of a scholarship from the Sisters of Providence and is going to Walla Walla, Wash., to work in pastoral ministry.
  • Sister Hong Nga Nguyen, who recently earned a degree in health-care leadership with a minor in non-profit management from the University of Washington-Tacoma. Her first words in English were spoken at St. Joseph Residence in Seattle. In her university program she was a fundraising intern for Providence community events and also interned at Providence ElderPlace. Next year she hopes to study nursing and this fall will go to the Philippines for a cross-cultural experience.
     
  • Sister Hong Nga Nguyen, who recently earned a degree in health-care leadership with a minor in non-profit management from the University of Washington-Tacoma. Her first words in English were spoken at St. Joseph Residence in Seattle. In her university program she was a fundraising intern for Providence community events and also interned at Providence ElderPlace. Next year she hopes to study nursing and this fall will go to the Philippines for a cross-cultural experience.
  • Sister Rosa Sen Nguyen, who recently received a degree with a major in psychology and a minor in theology from Gonzaga University, in Spokane, plus some elective classes in accounting and math and a certificate to teach English as a Second Language (ESL). She has been an intern at St Margaret’s shelter in Spokane and now is an accounting assistant, working with students and their families, at Providence High School in Burbank, Calif.

“I am in awe,” said Sister Mary Wilson, channeling the thoughts of all those in the room after the sisters’ presentation, “at your commitment, not just to the Sisters of Providence but to religious life and service to God’s people!”

“I am impressed by how far you have grown and matured. You are the future of our community,” said Sr. Judi Roberts.

Providence of God, we thank you for all!

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