As our melting pot of a country celebrates Independence Day, I’m celebrating a reunion with two of my sisters from the Collaborative Dominican Novitiate (CDN) – Christina Atienza, OP of the Dominican Sisters of San Rafael and Bea Tiboldi, OP of the Dominican Sisters of Peace. Together with two women who have since been beckoned by God to other life paths and with our two Directors, Joye Gros, OP (Peace Dominican) and Megan McElroy, OP (Grand Rapids Dominican), we shared space, experiences and an unforgettable year together in St. Louis in 2013-2014. The seeds sown then have sprouted into deep bonds of affection, friendship, sisterhood and a life-long family connection!
Our little St. Louis family is a representative slice of both the larger Dominican family and the United States. We are intergenerational, inter-congregational, and inter-cultural. I was the oldest novice and a mother. Bea (pronounced “Bay-uh”), originally from Budapest, Hungary, taught Religion to 1st through 6th graders in Akron, Ohio. She is moving soon to Connecticut where she will be living with other sisters in a house of discernment, working in two parishes as a Pastoral minister, and studying theology part-time. Christina, born and raised in Manila, Philippines, moved with her family to the Bay Area when she was 18. While her degree is in Civil Engineering, she has spent the past two years at Dominican University in San Rafael as a campus minister. She is moving soon to San Francisco to study theology full-time at GTU. Sisters Joye and Megan continue to hold down the fort at the CDN as Co-Directors.
I’m grateful to God for each of these women. They have broadened my world perspective and enriched my life beyond measure!
How about you? How have you experienced and welcomed the world as melting pot?
Kathy Flynn, OP
Whitefish Bay, WI