Providence Associate Ann Henderson: connected by Providence, justice
Can you give us a bit of background on your life so far?
I grew up in East Tennessee, in the foothills of the Smokey Mountains. My life was entwined with our neighborhood Presbyterian Church. I am the older of my parents’ two children. I attended the University of Tennessee. Shortly after graduating, I married my husband, Allen. We have four young adult children. My husband and I both teach for Georgia Southern University. He teaches music and I teach accounting. We continue to be active with our Presbyterian congregation in Statesboro, Georgia.
What first drew you into the Providence Associate relationship?
I was visiting a friend in Terre Haute in January of 2016. She suggested I visit the Woods one afternoon. After some reluctance, I ended up at the Providence Spirituality and Conference Center where I found myself on a tour of Saint Mother Theodore’s Shrine. Almost immediately, I felt a connection to the Sisters of Providence. Their faith with justice, mercy, and love at its center captured my attention and my heart.
How do you live out your commitment to the Providence Associate relationship?
The lack of justice for so many in our society weighs heavily on my heart and mind. Spiritual disciplines that I have learned from the Sisters of Providence help sustain me as I attempt to address these difficult issues in my community.
Are there any particular Sisters of Providence with whom you have an especially deep bond? Who and why?
Sister Rosemary Nudd was the guide for the shrine tour that I took back in January of 2016. She introduced me to Saint Mother Theodore. I felt a connection with Sister Rosemary and Mother Theodore from almost the moment we met. It was a gift. Sister Rosemary was my Providence Associate companion. We had many long and meaningful discussions around the Spiritual Integration Units. We learned much from each other and continue to have a rich friendship. I have no doubt that Providence brought us together.
If someone asked you about becoming a Providence Associate, what would you tell him or her?
I would say that if you are looking for a connection with people who care deeply about intimacy with God by following Jesus and standing with those on the edge of society, then become a Providence Associate! The Sisters of Providence are genuine in their concern for God’s creation, for the cosmos, and it is a privilege to be a part of their world.
What do you see as the future of the Providence Associate relationship?
I see the Providence Associates becoming more and more an integral part of the Sisters of Providence Congregation. I see the relationship growing and strengthening into a powerful force of love in this world.
Learn more about becoming a Providence Associate! Applications for those wishing to become associates of the Sisters of Providence in the coming year are being accepted until May 31.