Begining Feb. 22 – Mar. 2 you
can join us in praying the
St. Katharine Drexel
Feast Day Novena.
To view or
Begining Feb. 22 – Mar. 2 you
can join us in praying the
St. Katharine Drexel
Feast Day Novena.
To view or
A final, private “Mass of Thanksgiving” in St. Elizabeth Chapel at the National Shrine of Katharine Drexel was held at 2 p.m. on December 31, 2017. The Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament were joined by current and previous employees, volunteers, Associates and Clergy to offer praise and gratitude for the Eucharistic ministries and treasured relationships initiated there.
St. Martin De Porres multi-talented musicians and Gospel Choir brought a joyful tone to the event. Bishop Deliman of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia concelebrated the mass with almost a dozen various clergy members with close ties to the Sisters. The bishop noted in his homily St. Katharine’s fearless attitude of service and her visionary spirit…perfect inspiration for all present to further the Mission of the SBS.
Above Left: Bishop Deliman gives his homily and highlights St. Katharine’s fearlessness.
Above Right: Final Mass concelebrated at St. Elizabeth Chapel on Dec. 31, 2017.
St. Elizabeth Chapel was built by St. Katharine in 1892 as part of the original motherhouse. Nearing its’ centennial year, renovations began in 1988 in accordance with the Second Vatican Council. St. Elizabeth Chapel still stands today as a symbol of love and sacrifice that St. Katharine and the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament made over the years.
Left: Attendees pray quietly after communion.
Right Top: St. Martin De Porres Gospel Choir and musicians added their talents to the Mass.
Right Lower: Many guests packed the back of St. Elizabeth Chapel which showcases the banner from St. Katharine’s Canonization Ceremony held at the Vatican in Rome.
Click this link to view or to upload your images from the event. https://massofthanksgiving.shutterfly.com/
You can also view and tag yourself in images from the event in our SBS Facebook page album.
Oct. 9, 2017 – On this day, we remember the native peoples of this country with honor and respect, and recognize our own Native American Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament…Sr. Jeanette Kinlicheeny, Sr. Consolata Beecher, Sr. Theresa Chato, Sr. Marilyn Ross and Sr. Rosita Shiosee.
Fellow SBS and some residents of Paul’s Run gathered to honor Sr. Therese Misencik, SBS, who celebrated her 70th Jubilee, and Srs. Jane Norton, SBS, and Agnes McDevitt, SBS, who celebrated their 60th Jubilee as Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament. These Sisters have dedicated a lifetime of service in ministry, answering God’s call with a total “gift of self” commitment to the religious life. Their Jubilees were celebrated at a combined mass on Sunday, July 22, 2017 at 9:30 a.m. in the auditorium at Paul’s Run, with a small reception that followed.
(Shown below, left to right) Sr. Jane Norton, SBS, 60th Jubilee, Sr. Therese Misencik, SBS, 70th Jubilee, and Sr. Agnes McDevitt, SBS, 60th Jubilee. These Sisters celebrated their year of service to the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament with a mass, where they rededicated themselves to walking in the footsteps of St. Katharine Drexel through a renewal of vows.
To view the Facebook Album
of Jubilarian Images,
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Facebook Album of SBS 2017
Jubilee Mass and Reception,
On Saturday, April 15, 2017, Catholic worshipers gathered in a procession into St. Elizabeth Chapel for a final Easter Vigil Mass for both visitors of the Shrine and the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament.
The historic chapel, built as part of the Motherhouse property by St. Katharine Drexel in the late 1800’s, will no longer be open once the National Shrine of St. Katharine Drexel closes at the end of the year. For many of those in attendance, they were cherishing the opportunity to experience the beautiful candlelit service in this Chapel as the occasions to worship are limited in number as the year passes.
The beauty of St. Elizabeth’s Chapel shined during a candlelit Easter Vigil Mass where worshipers passed the light to one another, symbolic of passing on the light of the Risen Christ. The candles were used at various times throughout the Saturday evening Mass.
You can preview a photo album of the event on our SBS facebook page by clicking here.
There were signs of St. Patrick’s Day all around the Motherhouse during dinner time, and at a small celebration in St. Michael’s parlor. Some of the Sisters with Irish heritage, and some just pretending to be Irish for the day, wore hats, necklaces and green attire to embrace the spirit of the holiday. Isn’t it fabulous to see their smiling faces?
Activities coordinator, Lisa Abbe poses with Sr. Nicholas Cooke, SBS, for a photo at the St. Patrick’s Day get together on March 17, 2017.
In keeping with St. Katharine’s tradition of acknowledging the staff members whose efforts enable the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament to do their ministry work, a small prayer service and reception was held on March 15, 2017 at St. Michael’s Chapel and Parlor.
Above: SBS prays over the employees and staff at the prayer service of gratitude.
Everyone in attendance joined in prayer, reflection, and community while the Sisters expressed their deep gratitude for the employees, both personally and professionally.
Below, Sr. Pat Marshall, SBS, had a captive audience of listeners while she chatted with employees and staff. This included fellow Sister, Pat Downs, Director of the National Shrine of St. Katharine Drexel and Mission Center.
Above, Sisters Donna Breslin, Susanne Guglielmi and Sr. Agnes McDevitt of the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament had the opportunity to converse with employees Denise Sarbor and Tina Gerlach as well as other staff members during the reception.
To view more photos from the event,
On Sun., March 5, 2017, Bishop Edward Delliman celebrated the 9:30 a.m. mass at St. Elizabeth Chapel which publicly recognized the Feastday of St. Katharine Drexel and honored the 2017 St. Katharine Drexel National Justice Award Winner, Ann Hoppenot. Ann is affiliated with the Stuart County Country Day School and is the co-founder of KONEKTE Princeton-Haiti, an organization that she works so passionately to establish a partnership between Princeton, NJ and Fond Parisien, Haiti to support children and communities with educational initiatives.
On Mar. 3, 2017, the feastday of St. Katharine Drexel, founder of the SBS (Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament) was celebrated in St. Elizabeth Chapel with a mass. Many came to honor this American born saint on her special day in prayer and reverence.
Following the mass, the public was invited back to the Mission Center for a sharing of the bread celebration which included choices of homemade soup and bread, donated by the many wonderful volunteers at the Mission Center and Shrine. Young and old gathered in fellowship as well as to celebrate St. Katharine’s vision of building unity and community among all people.
On a chilly winter day, the warmth and sincerity filled the room as many people introduced themselves to others (considered strangers) and were joined as a community of Christians who continue to be inspired by the message of St. Katharine. St. Katharine Drexel promoted peace, justice, acceptance, and love for all. She set a great example through her work with the disadvantaged, and those who were neglected by society. Many who attended were reminded of her humility and tireless work to right the social injustices of her time.
To view our facebook album with more images from this day please, click here.
Friday, March 3, 2017 there will be a noon mass held on St. Katharine’s Feastday.
Sunday, March 5, 2017 will be the Public Feastday Celebration of St. Katharine Drexel along with the National Justice Award Ceremony. Mass will begin at 9:30 a.m. Both masses will be held at St. Elizabeth Chapel at the National Shrine of St. Katharine Drexel.
All are invited. Seating is limited.
Plan to join us a one of the Feastday mass celebrations at the National Shrine of St. Katharine Drexel, or if you can’t make it to one of those masses, plan a visit to the Shrine. If you have a group, please contact Tina Gerlach at (215) 244-9900, ext. 380 for more information and to schedule your visit. Shrine is open daily 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. through the end of 2017.
February 12, 2017, a 9:30 a.m. mass was held at St. Elizabeth Chapel celebrating the day in which St. Katharine began her religious order — becoming the very first of the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament, which she founded 126 years ago in the late 19th century.
A small reception was held following mass in the Mission Center building. Boy Scouts from St. Andrew’s Parish in Newtown, PA, were visiting the Shrine and learning more about St. Katharine’s life and ministry. The upstairs presentation was opened up to other visitors who might also like to watch and learn.
Thank you to all who attended and gave honor to St. Katharine Drexel.
View some of the images from these events below, or visit our Facebook album to see more of the photos.
To see more of the images taken at the event and tag photos of you and friends, visit our facebook album by clicking this link.
On January 12, 2017 the SBS (Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament) will celebrate the 100th Birthday of one of their own, Sr. Maureen Patricia Ryan, with a dinner in her honor at noon in St. Michael’s Addition Parlor.
Sister Maureen Patricia will enjoy cake with her fellow sisters at the motherhouse and may even be joined by a relative or two from Ireland, where she was born in 1917 to Thomas and Margaret Ryan. Her family has been awaiting this special occasion which will be acknowledged with a special proclamation from Ireland. The room will be a buzz with well wishers, some media and special presentations from local Bensalem representatives .
To view some images of Sr. Maureen Patricia Ryan, SBS, from our facebook album, click here. Contact Cheri Wenger in Communications if you have any that you would like to add to the album. We welcome your stories as well.
To view images from the event please click this link.
Held on Dec. 21, 2016, employees joined the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament in a festive Christmas celebration and luncheon. There were after lunch Christmas Carols lead by Sr. Carole Eden and employees with Sr. Joan Burnes accompanying them on the organ. Names were drawn for surprise Christmas gifts and Santa even took time out of his busy schedule to pop by and wish everyone a very Merry Christmas.
On Thursday, Dec. 1, 2016, a festive group attended the SKD Birthday Tea, an annual celebration in honor of St. Katharine Drexel’s birthday on Nov. 26. Tickets were required at the event and there were raffles for prizes as well as the opportunity to be a prayer angel to pray for one of the fellow attendees. There were delicious scones, tea and lots of friendly chatter. Sr. Joanne Bauer spoke about St. Katharine Drexel’s life, the charism of the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament, which she founded, and her mission to serve the least privileged around her.
You can preview a photo album of the event on our SBS facebook page by clicking here.
On October 29, 2016, there was a charitable spirit of unity and joy that filled the Pen Ryn Estate at the annual Gala fundraising event. You can read more about the history of this site here, and it’s ties to St. Katharine Drexel. This was the first time the event was held off the motherhouse grounds, and the new venue added to the ambience of the evening.
The fun-filled night included a cocktail hour in the reception hall followed by a lovely formal dinner in a separate dining room. Guest dined on wonderful food and enjoyed engaging conversations, the wonderful music of The Craig Satchell Experience and lots of fun on the dance floor. Jack Wall, brother of Amy Wall, recipient of one of the miracles performed by St. Katharine Drexel, helped present the awards to raffle prize winners.
The Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament would like to thank all who either attended and/or supported this year’s GALA event. If you didn’t have the opportunity to attend, however would like to make a donation, you can click this link.
Feel free to tag yourself and friends/family in the photos on our facebook page. You can view that album by clicking here.
To order photos and view in larger slideshow form, click here or type in our share site url into your browser:
You can also add your own photos to this share site for others to enjoy!
The Local Chapter of the Associates of the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament (ASBS) gathered for retreat time on Saturday, November 13, 2016, part of which included a mass held at St. Elizabeth Chapel at the National Shrine of St. Katharine Drexel.
Click this link to view more images from the local chapter ASBS retreat mass.
Much activity filled the Bensalem campus on Saturday, November 13, 2016. While the Associates were on retreat, crafters and craft enthusiasts gathered in the auditorium of St. Catherine’s to take part in the annual Craft Sale. Visitors were able to shop early for family and friends on their Christmas list with a great selection of crafts and items for purchase to fill stockings and set presents under this year’s Christmas tree.
View some of the images below or click to view and tag photos on our Facebook site.
On Nov. 2, 2016 people came to St. Elizabeth Chapel at the National Shrine of St. Katharine Drexel in Bensalem, PA to celebrate mass and pray the Chaplet of the Rosary as part of the Holy Hour celebration leading up to the the end of this Holy Year of Mercy designated by Pope Francis. Attendees brought dry goods to benefit a local food pantry and enjoyed some warm soup along with nice fellowship afterwards at the Mission Center.
A Sunday mass held on November 14, 2016 celebrated the closing of the “Holy Doors” at St. Elizabeth Chapel, one of the special sites designated by Pope Francis during the Holy Year of Mercy that were experienced by many who visited the National Shrine of St. Katharine Drexel in Bensalem, PA. To view the complete Facebook album, click here.
The SBS (Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament) join all Catholics in celebrating National Vocation Awareness Week, Nov. 6 – 12, 2016.
Chairman of the U.S. bishops’ Committee on Clergy, Consecrated Life and Vocations, Bishop Michael F. Burbidge of Raleigh North Carolina, states, “A culture of vocations is one that provides the necessary support for others to hear and respond to God’s call in their lives.” He further explains, “ With God’s grace, we help build that culture through fervent prayer, the witness of our lives and the encouragement we extend to those discerning a vocation to priesthood or consecrated life.”
However, not all vocations are to religious life. Some individuals may discern that single or married life may be the direction in which God is calling them. This week, take the time to reflect on how you can encourage someone in deciding which vocation is right for them.
Did you know that when a person is encouraged by three or more people in their life that they are more likely to take serious steps towards answering that call?
If you or someone you know is interested in becoming a Sister of the Blessed Sacrament, they can visit this page for more information or surf through the headings under the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament tab on our home page.
Halloween is the type of holiday that brings out the little kid in most of us, and it is no different for the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament who were ready to experience the fun festivities that a Halloween Costume Party provides.
Surrounded by clever costumes, lighthearted conversation and plenty of goodies to snack on, the mid-day celebration began. While some sisters kept their costumes very simple, wearing a small mask, hat or headband, others cranked up their creative juices to put together clever costumes to entertain one another with humor and laughter.
Did you know?
Occurring on Oct. 31st, the day before All Saints Day (also known as All Hallows’ Eve), the latter name was eventually shortened over time to what we now refer to in modern days as Halloween.
To view even more photos from the event, view our SBS facebook album.
Sr. Anne Kelly showed her wonderful hospitality, pushing around the drink cart to share ice tea with the party attendees. Many of the sisters and nurses pitched in to help make the party fun and a big success!
And this unique skeleton decoration made the Halloween party a real Thriller!!!
On Monday, September 26, 2016 The Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament were joined by a large number of staff to wish a fond farewell to a beloved Administrative Assistant, Sr. Victoria Fanino of the Sisters of Saint Joseph who has blessed St. Michael’s with her talents, compassion, creativity and dedication to the sister’s care over the past 12 years..
Now that her congregation has asked her to take on a new ministry, Sr. Vickie, as she is fondly referred to, sadly is called to leave her position on campus. Srs. Joanne Bauer and Pat Suchalski will be taking over for her.
Guests at the reception enjoyed cake and refreshment along with some musical tributes. A lovely Native American “Pendleton” blanket was presented to Sr.Vickie to remind her of the wonderful years spent at the motherhouse with the SBS. She also received a beautiful keepsake album created by Sr. Catherine Bardsley containing photo memories as well as handwritten notes by the sisters. Thanks to all who contributed to the lovely send off.
Sr. Vickie’s service to the SBS reminds many of an excerpt from St. Katharine’s Meditation Slips, vol.11, p. 87, June 1941, broadly referencing friendship — “The extent of one’s
love for another is measured, not so much by words of affection spoken, as by acts of kindness which a loving heart prompts.” — something that Sr. Vickie embraced wholeheartedly in her years of ministry with the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament. Everyone wishes her a fond farewell and many blessings in her new ministry.
To view and tag some of the images on Facebook, click here.
To see all of the images taken at the event or to add your own, visit the Shutterfly share site we created where you can also order prints.
The Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament hosted an evening of reflection and prayer in support of uprooting the many social injustices that exist today and to also pray as a local community for world peace. To view all of the images from this event click here.
Right: The 60th and 70th Jubilarians receive the Eucharist during a mass in their honor to celebrate their special anniversary Jubilees.
Sr. Dorothy Dowd and Sr. June Fisher proudly attended their 60th year of service, while Sr. Naomi Menza and Sr. Rita Radloff, who are both serving ministries elsewhere, were not in attendance.
Below, left to right: Sr. Dorothy Dowd and Sr. June Fisher pose by portrait of their foundress, St. Katharine Drexel, following Jubilee Mass.
Sr. Roselle Brodfuehrer, Sr. Anne Regina Corcoran and Sr. Margaret Sullivan (shown below, left to right) marked their 70th year of service to the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament and rededicated themselves to walking in the footsteps of St. Katharine Drexel.
While in visiting during the Celebration of Gratitude, Sr. Christine Smith and Sr. Judith Franz celebrated in a separate service on July 17, 2016 with fellow Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament. SBS Leadership Councilor, Sr. Jean Olmstead (shown right) with the 50th Jubilarians, congratulates them on their dedication and commitment. A special thanks to all these wonderful sisters!
After eleven days of straight rain it seemed like a true miracle was performed by the lady for whom this awesome fundraising event is named. Just a bit of mistiness as the golfers manned their carts, then the skies remained dry for the St. Katharine Drexel 3rd Annual Golf Outing — a fundraising event including 18 holes of golf, a luncheon, raffle drawings and plaques that were presented to the winners of the Closest to the Pin, the Longest Drive and overall Championship Team. Hosted again at the beautiful Bensalem Township Country Club, 83 golfers participated and numerous hole sponsors showed their support for this event whose proceeds benefit the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament.
Above, is the three time reigning champs who narrowly held onto their title this year when they tied with a 7 under score that was decided by the tiebreaker rule of comparing scores for the toughest hole deemed by course pro. These guys edged out some family competition…but to all the great competitors, there is always next year to try to dethrone these champions!!!
Many thanks to our host course, our volunteers and golfers, Dave Greer for organizing the event, and the many supporters who donated and sponsored the event! Thanks for making it a big success. The final total raised by this event is $7,110.98, our most successful outing to date!
(Bensalem, Penn.—May 3, 2016) “On behalf of all the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament, I am announcing today our Congregation’s decision to divest itself of two of our largest properties,” said Sister Donna Breslin, SBS, president of the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament. “We know the time is right to make this decision.”
The Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament are selling the historic, gracious 44-acre property in Bensalem, Penn., which Mother Katharine Drexel purchased to build the Motherhouse for the religious order she founded in 1891. The Congregation also is selling more than 2,200 acres in Powhatan, Va., near Richmond, the former site of two schools for black students: St. Francis de Sales for girls and St. Emma Military Academy for boys. Colonel Edward Morrell, Mother Katharine’s brother-in-law, acquired this land in the early 1890s. Later, the land was transferred to the Congregation.
The National Shrine of Saint Katharine Drexel on the Motherhouse campus remains open and continues to welcome visitors through 2017. Archbishop of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia Charles J. Chaput, O.F.M., Cap. has confirmed the remains of Saint Katharine Drexel will be moved, when the time is right, to the Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter & Paul, and placed near the altar already honoring her. She is the second American-born person ever to be canonized.
In addition, the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament are entrusting many of their archives to the care of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia, especially because Mother Katharine Drexel and her family played such a central role in supporting the Catholic Church in Philadelphia.
The Congregation has retained Plante Moran REIA as its exclusive real estate asset investment advisor to manage the disposition of both properties using a request-for-proposal (RFP) process.
Click here to read/download the entire press release.
High resolution JPGs of the Motherhouse campus, of Sister Donna Breslin, SBS accompany this release and can be found at this link.
Click here to view the statement from the Archdiocese of Philadelphia on their website.