Current Mission Location – Maryknoll Sisters Center- Maryknoll, NY
Magreth Mkenda was born to Theresia Ephreim Mkenda and Ephreim Mkenda on July 3, 1973 in Moshi, Tanzania, the ninth of ten children in a family of deep faith and trust in God’s goodness. She had 5 sisters: Bibiana, Theresia, Anna, Fides and Isadora and 4 brothers: Basil, Gabriel, Isadory and Paul. She graduated from Mkuu Secondary School, Kilimanjaro, Tanzania in 1992. She completed her pre-college studies at the Secondary School in Moshi and then on to Teachers College in Iringa, where she graduated in 1996 with an Associate of Arts Elementary Education Certificate. It was at this time that she began to observe the ministries of the Maryknoll Sisters.
“When I saw how Maryknoll Sisters lived together and reached out with love and kindness, especially to women in need, I began to feel attracted to them,” Magreth explains. On August 11, 2001, Magreth entered the Maryknoll Sisters at their Center in NY and joined the other new members in their orientation program home in Chicago, IL. For the next two years, she studied at Catholic Theological Union, Chicago. She pronounced First Vows September 7, 2003 at the Center and Final Vows November 7, 2009 in Moshi, Kilimanjaro, Tanzania.
Sister Magreth’s first assignment was to Cochabamba, Bolivia. From 2004 to 2008 she served in an orphanage for children, many of whom had been abandoned or were children of parents with AIDS. She was involved with education, social services and with ‘street kids.’
Before making final vows, she and four other Sisters reunited at Maryknoll to share together their experiences in mission and prepare for their final vows to live the rest of their lives as Maryknoll Sisters. Before returning to Bolivia, Sister Magreth made her final vows on November 7, 2009, in her hometown, Moshi, Tanzania, among her family, friends and Maryknoll Sisters. Mount Kilimanjaro was their backdrop.
In 2016 Magreth earned a Bachelor of Arts-Elementary Education from Albertus Magnus College, New Haven, CT.