2012 News

News from 2012

Michelle N. Lesher SSJ Makes Perpetual Profession of Vows

Sisters of Saint Joseph of Philadelphia, Associates, family, and friends gathered in Mount Saint Joseph Convent Chapel in the Chestnut Hill section of Philadelphia, PA on Sunday, August 5, 2012 as Sister Michelle N. Lesher SSJ, age 34, professed her perpetual vows as a Sister of Saint Joseph. Michelle was welcomed into full membership with the congregation by Sister Anne Myers SSJ, Congregational President and Sister Charlene Diorka SSJ Formation Director.

Michelle’s journey began eight years ago as an inquirer, then as a candidate, a novice, as an initially professed sister (2007) and culminated August 5, 2012 with sacred Rite of Perpetual Profession. Sister Michelle is currently missioned as Assistant Director of Campus Ministry at Chestnut Hill College.

The liturgy was filled with unique touches that had special meaning to Sister Michelle. One of those “touches” was her inclusion of family, friends and many children in the Mass. Reverend Robert L. Bazzolli OSFS, pastor of Our Mother of Consolation, located in the Chestnut Hill section of Philadelphia presided.

Michelle is the daughter of Wayne and Debbie Lesher. She grew up in the Philadelphia neighborhood of Manayunk/Roxborough, is a graduate of John W. Hallahan Catholic Girls’ High School in Philadelphia, and earned her bachelor’s degree in Music and Religious Studies from Chestnut Hill College.


Click here for photos of the celebration.




Sister Margaret Moore featured for work with troubled youth

Sister Margaret Moore SSJ is featured in "The Last Nun Standing in Paradise," on the blog of Sister Melanie Svobods, SND. Read it here

‘Nuns on the Bus’ bring social justice message to the Hill—


July 3, 2012   by Sue Ann Rybak

Members of Nuns on the Bus: (from left) Sr. Richelle Friedman, Sr. Diane Guerin, Sr. Simone Campbell, Sr. Mary Ellen Lacey and Sr. Diane Donoghue in Martino Hall at Chestnut Hill College on Friday, June 29. (Photo by Sue Ann Rybak)

The “Nuns on the Bus” message was simple: “Reasonable Revenue for Responsible Programs.” It is a response to a proposed federal budget drawn up by Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.), and it seemed to resonate with the approximately 300 people who showed up to greet them at a fundraiser held in Martino Hall at Chestnut Hill College.

Read more here.



Sister and Artist Margie Thompson SSJ featured in Chestnut Hill Local

Photo by: Grant Moser

The chestnuthilllocal.com  June 18, 2012 edition features an article on Sister Margie Thompson SSJ and her journey to become an artist. The article is entitled "Great Faith, great art go hand-in-hand for a CH College nun".

Read the article here.

Nuns on the Bus: Nuns drive for faith, family & fairness —

Tour Comes to Philadelphia June 29th and 30th

 June 18, 2012

In response to the current economic climate and the proposed budget by Representative Paul Ryan, NETWORK is sponsoring the Nuns on the Bus tour. The tour begins June 18, 2012 and concludes July 2, 2012.

NETWORK, is a national movement of people who are challenged by the Gospel, Catholic Social Teaching, and Earth principles. The organization acts for justice and peace in solidarity with the global community. The Sisters of Saint Joseph of Philadelphia are members of NETWORK.

Finishing touches are made to the tour bus

"As Catholic Sisters, we are missioned to stand with people in need and to be witnesses for economic justice," says Sister Mary Beth Hamm SSJ, Director of Social Justice for the Sisters of Saint Joseph of Philadelphia and Board member of NETWORK.

The bus stops in Philadelphia June 29th and 30th. Related events include:


Press Conference — Friday, June 29 at 3 PM — Representative Mike Fitzpatrick's Office — 1717 Langhorne-Newtown Road, Langhorne, PA

Friend-raiser for Economic Justice — Friday, June 29 at 7 PMChestnut Hill College, Martino Hall — 9701 Germantown Avenue, Philadelphia, PA

Ministry Visit — Saturday, June 30 at 9 AM — Mercy Neighborhood Ministries — 1939 W. Venango St., Philadelphia, PA


To learn more details about Nuns on the Bus, visit the event website at http://nunsonthebus.com/.

To learn more about NETWORK visit the organization's website at http://www.networklobby.org/.


Step Away for a Day Program

Step Away for a Day, a program of the SSJ Earth Center provides a day away from stressful lives of women in impoverished situation.


In collaboration with Philadelphia FIGHT, a program for people
struggling with HIV/AIDS, volunteers present a day of holistic spirituality and wellness. Pictured here Jimmy Clark, clay artist, teaches the women how to create a pinch pot.

Other activities included meditation, planting a flower, movement meditation and a nutritious lunch. Volunteers included Sisters Linda Lukiewski, Pat Feeley, SSJ Associate Margot Zuccarello, Michelle Mahan, Cecilia Princewell and Yvette Palmer.




Sister Dorothy Giloley SSJ, featured in the Mission Magazine

Sister Dorothy Giloley SSJ, who is missioned in Alaska, is featured in the Spring 2012 edition of  Mission Magazine from the Propagation of Faith. See pages 14-16.   Read it here.

Saint Ambrose Fourth Grade Sells Gummy Worms for Earth Day—Proceeds Benefit SSJ Earth Center


The Sisters of Saint Joseph and the SSJ Earth Center thank the Fourth Graders from Saint Ambrose Parish in Old Bridge, NJ for their thoughtfulness in raising $284 by selling gummy earthworms for Earth Day and making a donation to our Center.

The students presented the residents of the Villa with a special prayer card and presented Sister Mary Elizabeth Clark with the donation. This was during a prayer service they reverently offered. Students dressed as St. Joseph and Sisters of St. Joseph offered petitions and the whole class sang beautifully as they each made a presentation of elements of creation. Maggie Zmigrodski, Religious Eduvcation Coordinator prepared the students.

Thanks to the parents, teachers, deacon and his wife and Maggie for a wonderful

Focus on the Plight of the Immigrant

A Holy Hour of Prayer and Reflection focused on the Plight of the Immigrant was held at Saint Joseph Villa on April 15, 2012.

Representative of the Justice for Immigrants Campaign for the Archdiocese of Philadelphia, Mary Beth Schluckebier, offered a reflection on the struggles of women and men, who leave their homelands “for many reasons, but most often, to give their children a better life.”

Mary Beth focused her reflection on the struggles of Maria, a woman she met when she ministered at Visitation Parish during the year she was an SSJ Mission Corps volunteer. Mary Beth said to help her family Maria endured the loneliness of separation and a poverty that limited her to a diet of chicken and rice for months to help her family.

Prayers and readings selected for reflection during the Holy Hour were taken from Sacred Scripture, Catholic Social Teaching, Pope Benedict XVI, Truly Our Sister by Elizabeth Johnson CSJ, and other writings on the need for just immigration reform.

Sisters Kay Coll, Marie Lewis, Eileen Dorothy Maguire, Eileen Marnien, Lillian Needham, Connie Trainor, Marie Olwell, Grace Pino, and Dot Prettyman along with Mrs. Flor Barrera, one of Kay’s ESL students assisted with the program.

Through the work of the Justice for Immigrants Campaign (JFI), US Catholic Bishops are calling on Catholics to stand up for immigrants and to pray and work for just immigration reform. In the Diocese of Philadelphia, the JFI Campaign urges Catholics to pray, reflect and act around the immigration issue.

All are invited on Sunday, April 22 to participate in a JFI Training Session, which will be held at the Archdiocesan Pastoral Center at 4:00 p.m. Following the Training Session and a light meal, Archbishop Charles J. Chaput will celebrate Mass at the Cathedral at 6:30 p.m.



Justice for Immigrants Campaign Holy Hour Event

The Sisters of St. Joseph and Associates invite you to a holy hour focusing on the Plight of the Immigrant with reflection by
Mary Beth Schluckebier
Justice for Immigrants Campaign
Divine Mercy Sunday

April 15, 2012
2:30 p.m.

St. Joseph Villa Chapel
110 W. Wissahickon Ave.,
Flourtown, PA 19031