School Sisters of Notre Dame – Africa

Transforming the World through Education


1 Comment

Vocation Directors in Africa

designvocation

Here are the sisters to contact in each country in which we serve.

Ghana
Irene B Arthur irenebarthur@yahoo.com
Nigeria
Theodorah Ihiro  ihirotheodorah@yahoo.com
Janet Odey janetssnd@yahoo.com
Kenya
Magdalene Akpan magpoly84@yahoo.com
Mary Goretti Aboge mary_aboge@yahoo.com
The Gambia
Mary J Mendy mendy.mariej@yahoo.com
Sierra Leone
Eleanor Ewerts eleanorewerts@yahoo.com

Advertisements


Leave a comment

Planting a Future Promise

Vocation Directors

SSND Vocation/Affiliate Directors from the five countries in which we serve in Africa met recently in Cape Coast, Ghana. Sister Pauline Muoti sent this report.

Formation is a communal process, a service that is offered to a person who is discerning God’s plan. It is a stage that assists the growth in an individual’s journey. We experience formation through our integration of personal and our SSND values to make one and be about the mission. The formators are there to help the new person coming in to the community, to see if her story fits with SSND story regarding their traditions, folktales, theology and customs.

It was with an inmost joy that the gathering of sisters, vocation/affiliate animators at Cape Coast community, Ghana, shared and deliberated on how to cultivate a way forward to planting a future promise. God calls us to nurture our own vocation as we listen to our names being called each moment, every day. This was like comparing our Call with a minute, little seed sowed on the ground, and nurtured to maturity to produce a hundredfold. During the first session, we were called to hold gentle our own vocation story and reflect on how it has been encouraged, strengthened or tested throughout the years as School Sisters of Notre Dame.

The sessions were crowned with moments of fun and exchange of gifts.

the four eleanor plus
Vocation Promotion Ministry welcomes and invites all to be involved and to continue to open our doors to those who feel called.

designvocation


1 Comment

My Face is Red!

Yesterday I posted about the early years of School Sisters of Notre Dame in Kenya.  I posted that Sister Mary Martin, one of the original missionaries, was deceased.  Like Mark Twain said, “The reports of my death have been exaggerated!  Sister Mary Martin is very much alive and retired in Chicago!  We are grateful for her years of service to Africa!!


1 Comment

40th Anniversary Remembrances

Sisters Maris Simon and Mara Frundt were in the first group of School Sisters of Notre Dame to minister in Kenya.  They share some of their remembrances from that experience.

Sister Maris Simon still ministers in Kenya and she writes:

My personal remembrances of the early days in Kenya are still very fresh in my mind and I think the overwhelming one was gratitude to God for all that was happening around and inside of me. I can remember waking up in the morning and wondering if it was really true that I was in Africa. I think the transition was made much easier for us because of our close relationship with the Franciscan Sisters of St. Joseph. Over the years we had educated ten of their Sisters at Good Counsel and other colleges near by. Our original call to Kenya was to staff an Upgrading School for 40 of their Sisters who had been released from their ministries. These Sisters were so understanding of our needs and lack of experience in the African culture. We continue to see each other and relate with them even after 40 years. The changes that happened to me because of my experiences in Kenya will always be some of my most profound.

Sister Maris is introduced to Bishop Otunga of Nairobi.

Sister Maris is introduced to Bishop Otunga of Nairobi.

Sister Maris is a part of the Postulant Formation Community today.

Sister Maris is a part of the Postulant Formation Community today.

Sisters Maris, Mara and Mary Martin were the first SSNDs to go to Kenya

Sisters Maris, Mara and Mary Martin were the first SSNDs to go to Kenya

Sister Mara, kneeling, second from right) is now one of the Novice Directors.

Sister Mara, kneeling second from right, is currently one of the Novice Directors.

Sister Mary Frundt is currently one of the Novice Directors in Ghana. She writes:

We had had a lovely ritual of sendoff in the Mankato Province shortly before to which our families were invited. Being the first sisters to go to Africa from Mankato was significant and so we really had a special send off. We arrived in Rome on August 23rd. Who would have thought I would be here today, 40 years later, still ministering in Africa. We spent five days in the Generalate and again had a very lovely Mass in the Generalate Chapel and blessing from Mother Georgianne Segner before we left for Kenya. We arrived in Kenya August 28th which was significant to us being the feast of St. Augustine.<br />
We were met at the airport by Mother Stephen Nkoitoi FSJ and her sister driver Sr. Catherine and taken to Flora Hostel where we would rest until the next day. Mother Stephen was the first Superior General of the Franciscan Sisters of St. Joseph, a diocesan congregation with their motherhouse in Asumbi. She was not a stranger to us as she had been in Mankato for my Final Profession August 3rd. Two of her sisters also made Final vows in the same ceremony. She even attended the home Mass in Blue Earth, my home, the day after and spent time in with my family. It was a grand reunion to be met by her in Nairobi.<br />
The following day as I recall Sr. Mary Martin was not well so she remained behind at the Hostel and Mara and Maris went with Mother Stephen and Sr. Catherine the long journey of about eight or more hours to Asumbi. I don’t remember well if we met the bishop then but we did meet many sisters, many of whom would be our students. After two days we returned to Nairobi to begin our study of the Swahili language and continued to stay for three months at the Flora Hostel which was run by the Consolata Sisters. We loved it there as the sisters were very good to us and we met many other missionaries who came through Nairobi and, not having houses in Nairobi, stayed for short periods at the hostel.<br />
Thus began our sojourn in Africa which still continues. Many chapters could fill a book about these past 40 years. I am in Rome now with Mary Kerber originally from Mankato, Provincial leader of Africa, Julie Lattner of Canada who is Director of Temporary Professed sisters in Africa, Grace Okon, Provincial Councillor from Nigeria, Masicha Carolyne and Petronella Muteshi, Postulant Directors from Kenya and forty plus other SSND leaders and formators from around the world to work on our programs for Initial Formation of our new members. Having three African Sisters here speaks of the fruits of our presence and ministry in Africa these past forty years.<br />
I can only say I am one very grateful SSND for being called to mission in Africa when I was young and having been able to serve here 30 of the past 40 years in Kenya and now Ghana. It has been blessing upon blessing and I thank God and SSND for the call and my family for their faithful support.

Sister Mary Martin, one of the original group, is now retired in Chicago. Later that fall, three more sisters joined the first group in Kenya. Here are a few more pictures from those “early days”.

Sister Kathryn Berger and little friend.

Sister Kathryn Berger and little friend.

Photo3edit

Sister Dianne Perry

Sister Dianne Perry teaches Franciscan Sisters of St. Joseph.

Sister Dianne Perry teaches Franciscan Sisters of St. Joseph.