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Christmas Greetings from the Benedictine Sisters of Annunciation Monastery!
The season of Advent calls us to reflect on the birth of the Christ child, who was born in a stable because there was no room at the inn. In our ponderings, we may not always consider that Mary and Joseph, in their journey to Bethlehem, were homeless. They were in need of shelter, food, warmth and safety. It’s hard to imagine how the Savior of the world was born under such humble circumstances.
Last year at this time, we were challenged by Pope Francis in what he proclaimed, the “Year of Mercy.” The Benedictine Sisters of Annunciation Monastery have a long history of collaborating with others in the work of mercy, especially in education and healthcare. We are called to be the loving face of God to others in their time of need.
This year we have taken another step forward in our commitment. Sister Kathleen Atkinson, a member of Annunciation Monastery, founded Ministry on the Margins in 2013 as a volunteer-based, ecumenical ministry supporting those who fall through the cracks, especially in times of transition. In the three years since its founding, Ministry on the Margins has expanded to include prison ministry, prison re-entry, food pantry, coffee house, and spiritual and support gatherings. From a small group of individuals, Ministry on the Margins has grown to serve the needs of over 400 women, men and children each month.
In our four-year plan, our monastic community identified the needs of the homeless, the unemployed, and the incarcerated in our area as a concern and a call for us to act. We are committed to Ministry on the Margins with our prayers, personal involvement and community support. Therefore, we have chosen to make Ministry on the Margins the recipient of this Christmas appeal. We ask you to join with us to get this venture going on strong financial footing.
This Christmas, would you consider a generous gift of $50, $75, $125 or $250 to Ministry on the Margins to carry on our mission of loving service to God’s people. If you are blessed with abundance and you feel called to give more, please know of our deep gratitude.
May the tender light of Christ shine through us as we serve one another.
Sister Nicole Kunze, Prioress
and Sisters of Annunciation Monastery