Current Ministry Location – Panama
Sister Rebecca has reached so many people around the world in so many different capacities. She worked primarily in training others towards an awareness and understanding of their life realities. She facilitated their active participation in the shaping of lives and communities.
Rebecca Macugay was born November 7, 1946 in Cabatuan, Isabela, Philippines to Geronima G. (Garcia) Macugay and Severo C. Macugay. She had 3 brothers and 3 sisters. Rebecca graduated from Santo Tomas High School, Manila Philippines in 1961.
Rebecca (Becky) earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Medical Technology from the University of Santo Tomas in Manila, Philippines in 1965, and received a Certificate in Medical Technology from St. Theresa School of Med Tech in Waukegan, Illinois in 1968.
Becky entered the Maryknoll Sisters June 27, 1969 at the Philippine novitiate. She pronounced First Vows April 2, 1973 and Final Vows November 15, 1980 in Kenya.
Assigned to Tanzania in 1970, Sister Becky was one of a team that set up the Bugando Hospital at Mwanza, Tanzania, and trained lab technicians. In 1975, she went to Kenya, where she served in a variety of ministries, including high-school teacher, youth worker in a non-school setting, and Development Education trainer for adult literacy teachers in various Catholic dioceses in the country.
After returning to the United States 1985-89, Sister Rebecca earned a Master of Arts in Education degree with a focus on Development Education from the Center for International Studies of the University of Massachusetts at Amherst in 1986. She served several years as vocation minister for the Congregation before returning to Kenya.
As part of a pastoral team in Bura-Tana, Kenya, Sister Rebecca coordinated the training of village health workers, trained youth and women leaders, and participated in small Christian communities. During her year in Nairobi, she trained refugees in business management skills and helped to set up a day center for people living with HIV/AIDS.
Sister Rebecca transferred to Namibia in 1997 and teamed up with another Maryknoll Sister to establish the Christian development education program of the Rundu vicariate, in the northeastern part of the country. In this role, she trained church personnel from the different parishes, enabling them to work more effectively with their communities. In the national diaconate formation program, she worked with a team that helped deacons learn interactive methodologies in catechetics.
In Kleinmond, South Africa, 2001-2004, Sister Rebecca worked with the Cape Town Grail, part of an international women’s organization, to establish the Training for Transformation Program in 2000 for women development practitioners from Africa, Asia, Europe and Latin America.
Returning to the States in 2005, Becky joined the Development Department of the Maryknoll Sisters. As Mission Projects Funding director, Sister Rebecca worked with grant-makers and major donors to support the mission projects of Maryknoll Sisters overseas, as well as special projects and needs at the Maryknoll Sisters Center in New York. Also in 2005, she was interviewed for the Lives of Service series.
In October 2008, Sister Rebecca was elected vice-president of the Maryknoll Sisters as a member of the Congregational Leadership Team from 2009 to 2015.
In 2016 Sister was assigned to Panama.