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Sister Emily TeKolste professes first vows with Sisters of Providence

Sister Emily TeKolste proudly display the symbol of her commitment as a Sister of Providence, the white cross of gladness, after professing first vows as a Sister of Providence of Saint Mary-of-the-Woods.

“I love being a Sister of Providence! I love being a young sister in the world today,” says Sister Emily TeKolste.

Sister Emily professed first vows with the Sisters of Providence of Saint Mary-of-the-Woods, Indiana, on Sunday, June 30, in the Church of the Immaculate Conception at Saint Mary-of-the-Woods.

Three years ago, Sister Emily knocked on the front door of Providence Hall at Saint Mary-of-the-Woods and was welcomed as a postulant. The Carmel, Indiana, native entered the novitiate in 2017 and this past year, as a mission novice, Sister Emily taught theology and sociology at Bishop McNamara Catholic School in Kankakee, Illinois.

Sister Emily loves the Providence spirituality of the Congregation and her sisters and will now continue to discern the call to religious life as a Sister of Providence on the path to perpetual profession of vows.

Along with profession of first vows, Sister Emily will also be changing ministries and her local living community. Sister Emily has been assigned to a new ministry on the east coast.

“I will be living in Maryland with Sister Marilyn Baker and Sister Clelia Cecchetti and working at NETWORK in Washington, D.C., as a Grassroots Mobilization Specialist,” Sister Emily said.

NETWORK was founded by Catholic Sisters and the organization promotes justice related issues. Sister Simone Campbell, SSS, serves as the executive director of the organization.

During the ceremony on June 30, Sister Emily was presented the symbol of the Congregation, a white cross with a black symbol to represent Christ in the world, described by some as the white cross of gladness. This symbol is worn by all professed sisters as a sign of her vowed commitment to God and neighbor.

“I felt really loved and supported as family and friends and Sisters of Providence came to help me celebrate my commitment,” Sister Emily said. “I had a few friends come in the day before from different parts of my life. It was an opportunity for several folks to meet each other and spend some time together – that was especially fun and meaningful.”

As Sister Emily continues down her path, she will be mentored by Sisters Paula Damiano, Lisa Stallings and the Congregation’s New Membership Team.

“I am excited to begin discerning with my mentor what pieces to include in my personal plan for growth and transformation,” Sister Emily said. “I feel like I have a little more freedom to direct my ongoing growth while still having some extra support and opportunities to reconnect at the Woods.

Sisters of Providence General Officer Jenny Howard, who ministers as the liaison to the New Membership Team, said the Congregation is “always welcoming new women who wish to join us in this mission. We’re very blessed to have new members so that together we can carry forward God’s mission in our world.”

About the Sisters of Providence

The Sisters of Providence, a congregation of 214 women religious, with 300 Providence Associates, collaborate with others to create a more just and hope-filled world through prayer, education, service and advocacy. The Sisters of Providence have their motherhouse at Saint Mary-of-the-Woods, located just northwest of downtown Terre Haute, Ind., which is now listed in the National Register of Historic Places. Saint Mother Theodore Guerin founded the Sisters of Providence at Saint Mary-of-the-Woods in 1840. Today, Sisters of Providence minister in 13 states, the District of Columbia and Asia, through works of love, mercy and justice. More information about the Sisters of Providence and their ministries can be found at SistersofProvidence.org.

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Jason Moon

Jason Moon

Jason Moon serves as media relations manager for the Sisters of Providence. Previously, he spent more than 16 years in the newspaper industry.

Media contact

For inquiries or information, contact Jason Moon at jmoon@spsmw.org or 812-535-2810.

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