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20 people make commitment as Providence Associates

Twenty people recently deepened their relationship with the Sisters of Providence of Saint Mary-of-the-Woods, Indiana.

On Saturday, Oct. 21, Terre Haute residents Elizabeth Tyler, Patty Thoms, Betsy Simon, Mary Beth Mullen, Patrice LeMaire, Carla Leinwander, and Sandra Chappell, along with Jasonville resident Kimberly Faught; Greenwood residents Gwenn Goebel and Kathryn Smith; Indianapolis resident Merrilinda Nichols; Rosedale resident Jo-Ann Jones; Howe resident Nathan Stroup; Franklin resident Joshua Craft-Rutan; Attica resident Jesica Hollinger; Davis, Calif. Resident Connie Bauer; Evanston, Ill. resident Genevieve Costello; Oneida, Ill. resident Maureen Dickinson; Harrison, Ohio resident Linda Doyle; and Toms River, N.J. resident Christine Malekani made commitments as Providence Associates, choosing to walk more closely with the Sisters of Providence and live out their mission of love, mercy and justice.

Those making commitments as Providence Associates in 2023 include (front row, from left) Maureen Dickinson, Mary Beth Mullen, Betsy Simon, Sandra Chappell, Linda Doyle, Jo-Ann Jones, Kathryn (Kay) Smith, (middle) Patrice LeMaire, Nathan Stroup, Kimberly Faught, Patty Thoms, Gwen Goebel, Jesica Hollinger, (back) Elizabeth (Liz) Tyler, Connie Bauer, Carla Leinwander and Providence Associate Co-Directors Debbie Dillow and Sister Susan Paweski. Not pictured: Genevieve Costello, Joshua Craft-Rutan, Christine Malekani and Merrilinda Nichols.

“Being a Providence Associate is an opportunity to deepen my faith and be in relationship with a community of spiritual seekers,” Patrice said. “I will also be able to actively engage in the Providence Community’s mission of love, mercy and justice for all.”

Providence Associates are women and men of varying faith traditions who walk with the Sisters of Providence. Together with the sisters, they follow God’s lead in bringing love, mercy and justice to a world in need.

“Becoming a Providence Associate is very much like coming home,” Mary Beth added. “I attended Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College as a student mom in the 90s and stayed on to get my master’s degree. I have a deep and loving connection to the Woods and the Sisters of Providence.”

Providence Associate Co-Director Sister Susan Paweski, SP, said in order to become a Providence Associate, a candidate is paired with a Sister of Providence or Providence Associate companion and goes through a year of study, prayer and reflection.

Sister Susan added the 2023 commitments brought the total of Providence Associates to more than 320 in the United States and Taiwan.

“The process of becoming a Providence Associate involved a deep exploration of myself and the values and beliefs of the Providence Community,” Patrice said. “On this joyful journey, I was accompanied by my Sister companion, Sister Carolyn Bouchard, SP.”

“The process was so easy as my Sister companion, Sister Janet Gilligan, SP, lived close and I worked for the Sisters of Providence,” Maureen said. “We had worked together from time to time. Sister Janet recommended additional readings in addition to the units we discussed. Our conversations always ended up becoming interesting discussions of our similar backgrounds, spiritual growth and deeper thoughts.”

“Becoming a Providence Associate was uplifting as it opened me up spiritually,” Gwenn said. “My companion, Sister Mary Montgomery, SP, has been instrumental in keeping me on the path of discernment. She and the material have provided soul-searching moments which opened my heart to become one with the Sisters of Providence in their path to become more Christ-like.”

The Sisters of Providence are a community of Catholic women religious (sisters) who collaborate with others to create a more just and hope-filled world through prayer, education, service and advocacy.

If you feel called to explore the Providence Associate relationship, click here or contact Debbie Dillow at 317-250-3294 or ddillow@spsmw.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.

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