New order of nuns takes root in Wisconsin

Photo: William Glasheen/Post-Crescent Media

Details from The Green Bay Press Gazette: 

If a young soul wanders, Mother Mary Catherine has dedicated her to life to shepherding it back on the path to heaven.

She is trying to save souls as the founder and mother superior of a new community of Roman Catholic religious women within the Catholic Diocese of Green Bay. They’re called the Missionaries of the Word and their focus is to bring the Gospel to teens and young adults, which can be a volatile age for faith.

“I always consider it like rebounding them back into the court,” Mother Mary Catherine said. “We see it as such a teetering time of you can either go one way or the other. If you have the truth, you really can make a whole different choice. And those choices and those values, I remember from my education days, are what build your character and that’s what shapes the whole direction of your life.”

Green Bay Bishop David Ricken, who established the Missionaries of the Word on May 1 during a Mass at St. Pius X church in Appleton, said igniting the faith in young adults can make them strong believers for life.

The small community of sisters, marked by their blue habits, is trying to do just that by working in the spirit of New Evangelization, a movement within the Catholic Church to reintroduce the faith to those who no longer practice.

“We have a couple of generations of Catholics who haven’t been really engaged in their faith. Part of that is all the pressure from the culture, but part of it as well is that we haven’t done a very good job of really making disciples, you know real followers of Jesus, of our Catholic people,” Ricken said. “We can see that so many people that fall away from the church eventually wind up falling away from God. Some of them go to other churches, but often times they just quit and they get farther and farther away from God. So a person’s soul can wind up in trouble with all kinds of problems if they’ve excluded God or neglected God.”

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