70th Jubilee-Sister Marie Rosso, M.M.

Rosso, MarieSister Marie Rosso, M.M. from Philadelphia, PA will be celebrating her 70th Jubilee this year.

Sister Marie Rosso was born in Philadelphia, PA and joined Maryknoll in 1948. After graduating from Maryknoll Teachers College, her first teaching assignments were in Chinatown, NY and the South Bronx. She arrived in Hawaii in 1960 and taught in Kalihi. She also served in the remote atoll of Likiep in the Marshall Islands as teacher, Principal and head of a boarding school. Altogether she spent twenty-two years in teaching, mostly in junior high level. “Sharing in so many lives—students, parents, co-workers was a great blessing.”

She served two terms as Regional Coordinator for the Maryknoll Sisters in the Central Pacific, as well as coordinating personnel services for employees at the Sisters Center in New York and working in the Social Concerns Office. In Honolulu she worked in a variety of outreach programs in low-income housing.

Since 1986 Sister Marie’s focus has been on the needs of women. She is one of the founding members of three organizations: Women’s Concerns Committee, Interfaith Network Against Domestic Violence and Walking with Women. The issue of domestic violence was a primary concern and the three groups collaborated to provide educational workshops, presentations and worship services for clergy and church goers. She was involved with the Hawaii State Commission on the Status of Women for legislative advocacy, and contributed to a year long study for violence prevention education in schools pre-K to 12. She volunteered with S.O.S., Sisters Offering Support, a Hawaii based non-profit organization providing prostitution intervention through education and awareness and support for women exiting the sex industry.

In 2006 Sister Marie joined the Maryknoll Sisters Retirement community in Monrovia, CA.

70th Jubilee-Sister Elizabeth Salmon, M.M.

Salmon, ElizabethSister Elizabeth Salmon, M.M. from Chicago, IL will be celebrating her 70th Jubilee this year.

Sister Elizabeth Salmon was born in Chicago, IL January 13, 1925 and grew up in Denver, CO. Before her entrance into Maryknoll in 1948, she was a member of the Joy Cayler- All- Girl Orchestra, which traveled throughout The Orient during World War II as part of a USO entertainment unit. It was in Kyoto, Japan that Sister Elizabeth met Maryknoll Sisters and saw their work first hand, and it was while the band was playing in Seoul, South Korea that she returned home with the idea of entering the Maryknoll Sisters.

She made her first profession of vows on March 7, 1951 and later received a B.E degree from Maryknoll Teachers College in 1952.  That same year, she received her first mission assignment to the Philippines, where she taught religion and music classes for thirteen years.

In 1965, she returned to work in St. Louis and at the novitiate in Valley Park, MO.  In 1966-1968 she attended Saint Louis University and acquired M.E in Counseling and Guidance. Sister Elizabeth then co-coordinated guidance programs in 12 schools for the St. Louis Catholic School Office until 1971.

She was then assigned to Hawaii in 1972 where she taught grade school for 7 years. Sister Elizabeth continued to use her musical talents in planning the liturgy and music for the sacred Heart Parish in Honolulu, as well as counseling ministries. In 1983, Sister Elizabeth received a new assignment to Chicago where she served in the mission education program until 1989.

In 1989, Sister Elizabeth was assigned to Nicaragua in the rural area of Chacraseca outside Leon, where she was involved in various ministries with the poor including training of community leaders, and coordination of Community development.  Sister Elizabeth oversaw the construction of shelters, the drilling of wells and the repair of homes. She was also involved in ecological spirituality by encouraging restoration of ecosystem through reforestation.

After many years of mission service in Nicaragua, Sister Elizabeth returned to the Maryknoll Sisters Center in New York on September 5, 2007. She is an active member of the Eden community where she continues to use her music talents in planning liturgies and music for the daily masses.

70th Jubilee-Sister Rose Dominic Trapasso, M.M.

Rose Dominic TrapassoSister Rose Dominic Trapasso, M.M. from Buffalo, NY will be celebrating her 70th Jubilee this year.

Sister Rose Dominic entered Maryknoll on September 6, 1948 from Our Lady of Mt. Carmel parish, Buffalo, New York. She came with a B.A. in Education from NY State at Albany and an MS in Social Work from the University of Buffalo. She made her First Profession of Vows on March 7, 1951 at Maryknoll, NY and her Final Vows on March 7, 1954 in Bolivia.

Sister Rose Dominic’s first assignment was to Hawaii in 1951 working in Catholic Charities at Nuuanu, Honolulu. In 1953 Sister Rose Dominic was assigned to the Bolivia/Peru and did language study for one year at Cochabamba, Bolivia. In 1954 Sister Rose Dominic was sent to Peru and did social work in Lima. There she met Sister Rose Timothy Galvin in 1962 while working with poor Peruvian families. Both social workers were known as “the Roses” and in 1966 they moved to Caja de Agua in Lima where they were in charge of the administration of the program of social promotion directed to the Lima area until 1971. Caja de Agua was a “model” government housing project to resettle a whole community that had lived for years on the banks of the Rimac River in terrible slum-like conditions. The homes built of cinder block did have water and electricity. With their neighbors, the “Roses” lived on the “margins”. The Sisters visited sectors of the city where prostitutues would be on the street waiting for customers and the Sisters talked to the prostitutes, letting them know of their concern for them as women.

Creatividad y Cambio (Creativity & Change) was a Center started by Sisters Rose Dominic and Rose Timothy, dedicated to promote the human rights of women. The Center produced, published and distributed pamphlets with information on women’s issues and carried out campaigns against sexual exploitation of women. With the collaboration of two other women, they began a center called Movimiento El Pozo (The Well Movement) to work specifically with women involved in prostitution, and where these women could meet to talk about their problems and where they could find solidarity with other prostitutes.

As a women’s rights activist, Sister Rose Dominic estimated that thousands of Latin American women worked in Europe’s sex industry and the traffic had spread to Asia. Unlike voluntary migration, trafficking of persons involved violence, threats of violence or other forms of coercion. She addressed the underlying causes of women’s poverty and inequality and believed that if women were respected and their labor valued the same as men’s, women would not have to resort to prostitution for survival. The need was to eradicate the concept of women as sexual objects and promote women’s personhood.

Sister Rose Dominic also supervised the field work of students from the National and Catholic Social Service schools where she taught. The archbishop asked her, with Sister Janet McConnell, to promote Family and Community Services within the Archdiocesan welfare program of Caritas of Lima.

As a Peruvian citizen, Sister Rose Dominic attended the International Conference on Women in Beijing, sharing with women of over 180 countries the common concerns of women around the world and ways to help one another.

70th Jubilee-Sister Mary Thecla Tsuruda, M.M.

Tsuruda, TheclaSister Mary Thecla Tsuruda, M.M. from blank will be celebrating her 70th Jubilee this year.

Sister Mary Thecla Tsuruda entered Maryknoll on October 14, 1948 from the parish of St. Francis Xavier in Los Angeles, CA. After her mother’s death, the Catholic faith was introduced to her by her sister who was by then three years a convert.  Sister Mary was baptized in 1945 at Manzanar Relocation Center after she finished the required instructions for baptism.

Her first assignment was to Kyoto, Japan in 1953 where Sister Mary immediately started language study and did parish work at Saiin, Takano and Kyoto from 1954 – 1970.  Later at Kyoto, Sister Mary taught English to children and adults from 1971-72, and Adult Education in 1973, also at Kyoto.

Sister Mary’s next assignment was to the Central Pacific Region where she did parish work in Honolulu from 1975-1980 and at the Catholic Social Service Outreach for the Elderly from 1981-1985.  Following Congregational Service at Monrovia (1985-88), Sister Mary returned to Honolulu in 1991 and was a full time worker as Service Aide at the Catholic Charities Services to the Elderly from 1991-1995.

In 2013, Sister Mary returned to the Maryknoll Sisters Center in NY to retire.

60th Jubilee-Sister Bernadette Duggan, M.M.

Duggan, Bernadette CordisSister Bernadette Duggan, M.M. from Boston, MA will be celebrating her 60th Jubilee this year.

Sister Bernadette Duggan was born in Boston, MA. After earning her R.N. at Catherine Labouré School of Nursing in Dorchester, MA in 1958, she entered the Maryknoll Sisters. In 1967, Sister Bernadette completed her B.S. in Nursing at Salve Regina College in Newport, R.I. and went on to receive her Master’s degree in Public Health Nursing from the University of Minnesota in 1969.

Assigned to the Philippines in 1970, Sister Bernadette worked in St. Joseph’s Hospital in Manapla which was administered by the Maryknoll Sisters. It was a practice facility for students in a bacalaurate program in Bacolod and she enjoyed being the field work guide for the nurses in formation. For the next ten years Sister Bernadette worked on the island of Mindanao in the mountains of Upi, Maguindanao with the tribal Tiruray people. She opened a clinic and paramedic training program. By 1984, a fine Tiruray nurse-midwife took over the work and Sister Bernadette was assigned to the Maryknoll Sisters Center for congregational service until 1988. In 1989, she was assigned to Bangladesh.

This allowed Sister Bernadette Cordis to contribute her nursing talents in health services at Maryknoll, NY. In 1989, she was assigned to Bangaldesh where she served with a Maryknoll Sister doctor in a small rural hospital near the reserve for the Royal Bengal Tiger, so they had tiger bite patients. Sister Bernadette said if the patients got to them alive, they could save them because “we had a team where each knew what to do, and immediately.”  Actually, most of their patients were women with complications of pregnancy because the Muslim women preferred being examined by a woman doctor. They had pre- and post-natal clinics and classes for local traditional midwives. After fifteen years, a Sister doctor of another community arrived and this freed Sister Bernadette Cordis to respond in 2006 to a request for a nurse in the AIDS Hospice Seedling of Hope administered by the Maryknoll team in Phnom Penh, Cambodia.

In November 2008, Sister Bernadette was assigned to the Rogers Community, Maryknoll, NY and worked in outpatient care as a companion on medical trips.

60th Jubilee-Sister Mary Ellen Kerrigan, M.M.

Kerrigan, Mary EllenSister Mary Ellen Kerrigan, M.M. from Leadville, CO will be celebrating her 60th Jubilee this year.

Sister Mary Ellen Kerrigan entered the Maryknoll sisters in 1958 from Leadville, CO, after receiving her RN from St. Joseph’s Hospital in Denver. Following her first Profession, she served on the nursing staff at Maryknoll for three years and was assigned to Taiwan in 1965.

After two years of Mandarin language study, she worked as a clinic nurse in Wu She until 1969 when she did nursing in Taiwan University Hospital in Taipei.

Returning to the States in 1971, she completed undergraduate studies at Mary Rogers College at Maryknoll, a B.S. in nursing at Russell Sage College, Troy, NY, and her Masters in nursing from New York University of Education in 1976.

After these studies, Sister Mary Ellen returned to Taiwan to work as Nursing Supervisor in the 120-bed St. Joseph’s Hospital in Kaohsiung in the south. After six years, she decided to leave this work in the capable hands of trained Taiwanese nurses.

In 1983, she studied the Taiwanese language in Taichung and then joined a team of three doing pastoral ministry in the Chunan parish. She immersed herself in the language and the many opportunities she had to learn more about the life of the people outside the hospital situation. Sister Mary Ellen deeply appreciated the mutual evangelization in this pastoral ministry. As she grew in her appreciation of the people, she discovered that “the importance of personal relationships rather than the importance of work has affected the way I approach life.”

Called by the congregation to serve in vocation ministry on the admissions team at Maryknoll, NY, in 1987, she had the opportunity to share how she saw God working in her life in mission.

In 1991, after taking courses on HIV/AIDS and the care of those infected and affected by this infection, she went back to Taiwan. IN 1992, she returned to the National Taiwan University Hospital in Taipei to try to help the nurses and doctors there. Many of them were very afraid and knew little about the prevention of HIV infection and the care of people with AIDS.

In 1994, Sister Mary Ellen was invited to go to the Taipei Prison in Taoyuan to help answer questions of prisoners living with HIV/AIDS.

In 2015, she was assigned to the Maryknoll Sisters Center to care for the elderly Sisters in the nursing home facility.

60th Jubilee-Sister Margaret Kollmer, M.M.

Kollmer, MargaretSister Margaret Kollmer, M.M. from Munson, NY will be celebrating her 60th Jubilee this year.

Born in Munson, NY, Margaret “Marge” Kollmer entered Maryknoll in 1958 as a registered nurse from St. Catherine’s Hospital School of Nursing. She became certified in anesthesiology from St. Francis Hospital/Viterbo College, LaCrosse, WI, and was assigned to Korea in 1964.

Sister Marge set up an anesthesia department at Maryknoll Hospital, Pusan, and later gave an 18-month anesthesia course to post-graduate nurses. She worked with the government’s Ministry of Health & Social Affairs for certification of Korean nurse anesthetists. Sister Marge’s nursing skills also were used to serve the poor on islands near the Korean peninsula, and she often fulfilled health services for women workers and prison inmates. In Song Nam, she was a member of a basic ecclesial community team.

For five years, Sister Marge served as director of congregational health services for the Maryknoll Sisters. When she returned to Korea in 1989, she was asked to help set up a home care hospice program in Seoul for the Catholic social services agency. She also worked with a team whose services were non-denominational, offering direct home care, a bereavement program, and organized programs to help encourage hospice programs among the general public.

Returning to the United States in 1994 for family ministry, Sister Marge began to volunteer in hospice programs: one day her life changed with a phone call from Transfiguration Parish in Brooklyn, where a group had been planning to open a residence for homeless people living with AIDS. After meeting the team, she responded to their need for a registered nurse to be a part-time medical coordinator at Casa Betsaida. Sister Marge continued with the Visiting Nurse Service of New York, working with hospice home care patients. “I have learned that hospice is assisting the person to live fully each moment of each day.”

In January 2011, Sister Marge left for a two-year assignment in Korea. She helped with hospice patients and served in a clinic for the poor, as well as teaching English to the aspirants and novices of the Sisters of Paul de Chartres.

In 2014, at the annual congress of the American Association of Nurse Anesthetists, Sister Marge accepted the Hermi Lohnert Award for a lifetime of service in the nursing field.

She has been the Wellness Promoter at the Maryknoll Sisters Center, Ossining, NY, since February 2013.

60th Jubilee-Sister Carol Marie McDonald, M.M.

McDonald, Carol MarieSister Carol Marie McDonald, M.M. from Cincinnatio, OH will be celebrating her 60th Jubilee this year.

After 26 years in Panama, Sister Carol Marie McDonald was “loaned” for a year to the El Salvador region to help with designing a self-help cottage industry involving HIV/AIDS patients and their families. The “loan” changed to an assignment to El Salvador in 2009.

Presently she shares her background in scripture with the group, Biblista Popular (BIPO), which translates as The Bible in Community. This program provides on-going biblical formation for lay leaders from parishes or Christian communities, giving seven one-day workshops and a week-long intensive workshop each year. The participants leave equipped to reproduce the sessions in their own communities. The program provides a much needed service for parish leaders, especially from the rural areas, as the parishes and dioceses are unable to provide this opportunity. They also publish a monthly magazine for the communities.

She also works with CINDE (Developing Communities for Small Children). This program provides day care, kindergarten and after-school programs for the children and also programs in parenting, money management, etc. for the women whose husbands have been only marginally present, originally because of the conflict and later because of massive migration in search of employment. Sister Carol Marie works with a program of economic alternatives with a group within CINDY; she says they are “spunky ladies.”

Sister Carol Marie entered Maryknoll in 1958 from Cincinnati, Ohio. She was assigned to Chile in 1963, where she studied art at the Universidad Católica and later earned her B.A. in Art and her M.A. in Art Education in Ohio.

Back in Chile, she taught art in high school in Talcahuano and worked  in Santiago doing graphic design of materials used to train catechists. She also was a member of a reflection group in national and archdiocesan offices of catechetics and gave courses for religion teachers, adult catechists, and Basic Ecclesial Communities.

In 1981, Sister Carol Marie went to Panama where she marveled at the beauty and diversity of the Panamanian people. “We have so many ethnic groups in this tiny country–the diversity is nothing less than fascinating.” She went to the Apostolic Vicariate of Darien,  an isolated rural area, working with basic ecclesial communities and collaborating in training programs and material for pastoral teams throughout the vicariate. She also taught Scripture and theology in the University of Santa Maria la Antigua in both Colon and Panama City.

From this green jungle, Sister Carol Marie moved to Las Mañanitas on the outskirts of Panama City. People had migrated there from the rural areas. She concentrated on two communities, one with no road, electricity or water, and the other a housing project of 400 tiny houses. While teaching at the area’s major seminary and pastoral institute, she felt that the two communities in a poor neighborhood “grounded” her in a good way.

Workshops in creativity brightened the neighborhood summers with theater, puppetry and even marvelous murals that now grace some institutions. “I appreciate space and time for creative work and fostering creative work in others,” said Sister Carol Marie.

Sister Carol Marie currently resides at the Maryknoll Sisters Convent in Monrovia, CA, where she has been since 2014.

60th Jubilee-Sister Dolores Mitch, M.M.

Mitch, DoloresSister Dolores Mitch, M.M. from Missoula, MT will be celebrating her 60th Jubilee this year.

Sister Dolores Mitch was born in Missoula, Montana and educated in Catholic schools there. After attending Gonzaga University in Spokane, Washington, she joined Maryknoll in 1958. Assigned to the Philippines in 1963, Sister Dolores served in two Maryknoll Sisters’ high schools in Lipa City Batangas and Santo Tomas, Davao del Norte.

Sister Dolores also was missioned in two Muslim communities in Mindanao, first at the University of Notre Dame in Cotabato City among Muslim and Christian students and then as Chairperson of Education in Notre Dame of Jolo College, Jolo, Sulu, a predominantly Muslim area. In both schools she supervised the students in their practice teaching as well as teaching professional subjects and English.

Leaving formal education in 1984, Sister Dolores became Executive Secretary of the Sisters Association in Mindanao (SAMIN) based in Davao City. SAMIN is an organization of Sisters from different religious communities who work among the poor. “This was a particularly rich time of my life where I was challenged to develop skills and abilities I didn’t know I possessed! Going to many places in Mindanao, meeting the Sisters in our association as well as the people they worked with taught me so much!”

For ten years Sister Dolores lived at the Maryknoll Sisters Ecological Center, Baguio City, Luzon, while she led Intensive Journal workshops for groups of religious, teachers, seminarians and lay people, in the area of personal development and spiritual growth.

In 2007, she was assigned to the Maryknoll Sisters Center as Communications Manager, where she led intensive journal workshops several times a year.  In 2013, Sister Dolores was assigned to our center in Monrovia, CA to assist the elderly Sisters.

60th Jubilee-Sister Consuela Torrecer, M.M.

Torrecer, ConsueloSister Consuela Torrecer, M.M. from Puunene, Maui HI will be celebrating her 60th Jubilee this year.

The call to live my contemplative missionary vocation in Guatemala came after seeing the movie ‘El Norte.’ It was a faith response to be present as a community of faith witnessing to the power of the Spirit at work in our time in the midst of violence and oppression.”

Sister Consuela Torrecer was born in Puunene, Maui, Hawaii, one of eleven children born to Filipino immigrants. After attending the Maryknoll Sisters High School in Maui, and working in Honolulu, she joined Maryknoll in 1958.

While working at the Maryknoll Sisters Motherhouse, Maryknoll, NY, Sister Consu requested an assignment in 1965 to the Cloister which  Maryknoll Sisters foundress Mother Mary Joseph Rogers described as “a contemplative community with a different kind of work to do.” An integral part of the Congregation, these Sisters are called to live their lives in prayer and sacrifice for the support of missioners, especially Maryknollers, and the missionary endeavor of the universal church.  Sister Consu was a Spiritual Director as well as a Retreat Director, with the retreatants participating in the Sisters liturgy and communal prayer. With another member of her community, Sister Consu gave retreats to Maryknoll Sisters in the Philippines, Taiwan, Japan, Korea, Hong Kong and Hawaii. She was part of a Charismatic Prayer Group which met weekly and was mutually enriching for all participants.

In 1986, Sister Consu and two others were assigned to begin the first overseas cloister in the village of Lemoa, Quiche, Guatemala. After Spanish study, they lived in a parish building, which had been used by the military as a torture center. They studied the Quiche language; welcomed prayer groups to use the parish hall; welcomed the people’s visits; walked up the mountains to accompany their celebrations. All they learned became their prayer. Nine years later, Sister Consu returned to the Contemplative Community at Maryknoll, NY, where she continues to reside and pursue a life of prayer.