Associate Program flourishes in St. Louis, MO
The Sparkill Dominican community in St. Louis, MO gathered on May 6 as it does annually to celebrate the congregation’s Foundation Day. Sisters and Associates participated in a prayer service honoring the community’s history and impact and celebrated the commitment of three Associates: two who renewed their commitments for five years and one who made an initial commitment of one year.
Margaret Bush, who has served as a Co-Director of the Associates in past years, joined Colleen Calhoun in renewing their commitments to live out the charism and mission of the Sparkill Congregation in their own lives. Both women “are very willing to share their talents and gifts with us and we have been blessed with their presence,” shared Sr. Connie Bauer, Co-Director for the St. Louis Associates. As members of the program for some 30 years, Margaret and Colleen have unique insight on the Dominican Associate experience.
“Since my first commitment as a Dominican Associate of Sparkill on Foundation Day in May of 1986, I continue to be inspired by the many Sisters and Associates I consider friends. Being a Dominican Associate has been a blessing to me. I thank the Dominican Sisters of Sparkill for continuing my faith journey with me.” ~ Margaret Bush
“I became an Associate to help me stay focused on what God had in mind when He/She so lovingly created me. My one goal in this life is to become total praise of God and I am open to whoever or whatever helps me toward that goal. I continue to feel that the Dominican Sisters of Sparkill are living out the same values I hold, and I know my association with them will help me reach my ‘goal.’ ” ~ Colleen Calhoun
The community then welcomed a new Associate, Gwen Tresch, who made her first commitment to the congregation. A former Sparkill Sister, Gwen’s ties to the community have remained strong, making the Associate program a natural fit. She engaged with the St. Louis Associate group for a year prior to her commitment and has participated in many community activities. “By becoming an Associate, I’ve put a name on a life-long relationship with the Sparkill Dominicans,” Gwen shared. “I moved to a new location and was seeking a faith-sharing group. Attending the Associates’ meetings incorporated a spiritual element and a chance to be with old friends to share God’s love in word and support.”
Associates of the Dominican Sisters of Sparkill make their commitments on May 6, 2018. From L-R: Gwen Tresch, Margaret Bush, Program Co-Director Sr. Connie Bauer, Program Co-Director Mary Lou Storment, and Colleen Calhoun.
“We are truly blessed to have these three gifted women in our presence and we are very grateful for their willingness to journey with us,” said Sr. Connie Bauer. “Each Associate expresses gratitude for the deep sharing and prayerfulness they experience at our monthly meetings. We also have fun! Our gatherings always close with social time just as our Foundation Day celebration did.”
To learn more about the Sparkill Associate program, view our Becoming a Dominican resource pages.
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