SCs Join Other Women Religious for Leadership Collaborative Gathering

Sisters Victoria Anyanwu, Patricia Dittmeier and Montiel Rosenthal joined more than 100 women religious for a leadership collaborative gathering this past May. The special reunion included current and former participants of a collaborative leadership development program started years ago. Participants ranged in age across two generations, from those in their 30s to those in their 70s.

Sisters arrived from five different continents to pray, network, share their experiences in terms of leadership on many levels, articulate their hopes for the future in terms of developing leadership among themselves, and other sisters, and with communities around the world. Leadership was defined as being in transformational servant leadership for the people of God, and was not limited to congregational leadership. Nor was leadership limited to just the experience of leadership in the United States.

While the Sisters of Charity of Cincinnati generously supported and encouraged this endeavor, there was significant support from the GHR and Hilton foundations, which recognize the importance of developing leadership among women religious around the world. As an outgrowth of the many different leadership development programs experienced, participants have come together as a larger organization, to address common concerns in terms of individual and collective growth and leadership, and opportunities for collaboration in mission and ministry.

During the gathering, participants broke up into individual focus areas for discussion. Some of these focus areas included: ongoing prayer for response to violence and terrorism in our world; ministerial focus in Nigeria; ongoing leadership development opportunities; younger members in leadership; immigration; the vowed life; the ministry of presence; systemic change; fostering emotional health and well-being among members; and networking through social media and other means to enhance collaboration and the sharing of Sisters’ unique gifts and contributions.

The gathering closed with a prayerful reflection on the visitation story from Luke's Gospel, recognizing the parallels of bringing to birth new life, and trusting that God will bring that to fruition.