Judy Quest and Mary Jane Tiernan - Associate Coordinators for Omaha and San Diego

We are very pleased to announce that the Provincial Team has appointed Judy Quest to serve as Coordinator for the Omaha group.  Judy’s leadership will help to transition the Omaha group to Associate leadership, after the retirement of Sr. Sumpter. 

Judy Quest has been a member of the Omaha group for about 10 years and previously served as Co-Coordinator for the group before stepping down for health reasons.  Judy retired in 2014 after 23 years as a counselor at Duchesne Omaha.  Judy also served the Network of Sacred Heart Schools in coordinating the Clown Project in Omaha.  She is a professional clown and has worked with young people to share joy with others through the work of clowning.  Currently she volunteers at the Holy Family Parish lunch program.  She says that her main task is "to smile and let (people) know they are loved."  (Her clown name is Dear Heart.)  She is dedicated to the Omaha Associates group, and although a little bit nervous about navigating the immediate route forward without Sr. Sumpter, is passionate about keeping the group together and moving forward.  She and her husband Tom have been married for 40 years.  (Tom has served on the Facilities staff at Duchesne and retires this year.)  They have three children. 

We are very grateful to Judy for her willingness to serve in this capacity. 

And, we are very grateful to Sr. Sumpter for her leadership and care for the Omaha group over the years!

We are also very pleased to announce that the Provincial Team has appointed Mary Jane Tiernan to serve as Co-Coordinator of the San Diego Associates group to succeed Suzanne Strassburger. 

Mary Jane Tiernan has been a long-time Associate, since the Associates actually started in San Diego. She is very committed and engaged in both the spirit, prayer, and the monthly meetings that occur from September to June each year. She is very much a Sacred Heart person: an alum, a friend of many RSCJ, and a faithful member of the San Diego Community of Associates. She is a woman of prayer. She actively supports the Associates activities all these years. She is a very caring member of this community of women who strive to grow in deeper relationship with God, and to live each day the grace of having known the love of the Sacred Heart of Jesus.

We are grateful to Mary Jane for her willingness to serve in this capacity. 

We also want to thank Suzanne for her years of service as Co-Coordinator of the San Diego group.

-Jane Steinfels, Associates Committee


Peggy Gorman appointed to Associate Committee

We are pleased to announce that Peggy Gorman has been appointed to serve on the Associates Committee, as a new representative for the Central region (with Julie Siderfin).  Peggy will represent Halifax and Chicago on the Associates Committee. 

Peggy came to know the RSCJ in 2002 when she was hired as the head nurse at Barat residence. She worked there for 5 1/2 years. In 2003, she began the journey as an associate and made her first commitment on December 5, 2004. As an Associate in the Canadian province she was a member of the spirituality round-table and also had the opportunity on two occasions to help plan an Assembly. In March of 2015, she attended the Associate Co-Coordinator gathering in New Orleans and subsequently became a member of the Associates Committee Spirituality Subcommittee.  She was also involved in helping to prepare the 2016 Lenten prayer. She was asked to be a member of the Health and Wellness committee and that will finish once the report is done in June. She is also an executive member of Arcan, a committee which represents associates and religious congregations in the Atlantic provinces.

We are grateful to Peggy for her willingness to serve.

- Jane Steinfels, Associates Committee

Associates Committee - May Report

The Associates Committee continues to our work from the April meeting in Washington, DC.

The Associates Committee will be modifying our areas to mirror the RSCJ regions in the Fall of 2016.  We will continue to have representatives in the East (Albany, Boston, Fairchester, and Washington, DC) and West (Seattle, San Diego, San Francisco, and Menlo).  The central region for the Associates will have 2 representatives: one for St. Louis, Omaha, New Orleans, and Houston, and the other for Halifax and Chicago.  At the present time, Sue Whalen represents the East, Michelle Hogan the West, Cathy Knapik the South, and Julie Siderfin the Central.  We welcome Peggy Gorman to the Associates Committee as the second representative for the Central region. 

As Regional Representatives, we strive to serve our local areas.  We are trying to figure out the best ways to communicate and to support in our local regions.  We invite your suggestions!

In the Fall, the Associates Committee will be requesting nominations for representatives for the EAST and WEST, as Sue Whalen and Michelle Hogan, respectively, conclude their terms.  We will also be seeking nominations for an RSCJ to join the Committee as Kathy Dolan completes her term. Our hope would be to identify those committee members by our spring/summer Associates Committee meeting so that they would be ready to begin their roles in the Fall of 2017.  More to come in the Fall!

Houston, Seattle, and New Orleans have new Co-Coordinators.  San Diego is beginning the process for both Associate and RSCJ Co-Coordinator roles.  The DC group hopes to have nominees by January of 2017.
We are walking with Omaha in this time of transition.  The Omaha group looks forward to continuing but we are working together to develop ways of maintaining the direct relationship with the RSCJ.

The Associates Committee is preparing their end of year report for the Society.  We look forward to receiving all of the reports from the local groups to aid us in this process.


-Jane Steinfels, Associates Committee

Judy Quest and Mary Jane Tiernan - New Associate Coordinators

We are very pleased to announce that the Provincial Team has appointed Judy Quest to serve as Coordinator for the Omaha group.  Judy’s leadership will help to transition the Omaha group to Associate leadership, after the retirement of Sr. Sumpter. 

Judy Quest has been a member of the Omaha group for about 10 years and previously served as Co-Coordinator for the group before stepping down for health reasons.  Judy retired in 2014 after 23 years as a counselor at Duchesne Omaha.  Judy also served the Network of Sacred Heart Schools in coordinating the Clown Project in Omaha.  She is a professional clown and has worked with young people to share joy with others through the work of clowning.  Currently she volunteers at the Holy Family Parish lunch program.  She says that her main task is "to smile and let (people) know they are loved."  (Her clown name is Dear Heart.)  She is dedicated to the Omaha Associates group, and although a little bit nervous about navigating the immediate route forward without Sr. Sumpter, is passionate about keeping the group together and moving forward.  She and her husband Tom have been married for 40 years.  (Tom has served on the Facilities staff at Duchesne and retires this year.)  They have three children. 

We are very grateful to Judy for her willingness to serve in this capacity. 

And, we are very grateful to Sr. Sumpter for her leadership and care for the Omaha group over the years!

We are also very pleased to announce that the Provincial Team has appointed Mary Jane Tiernan to serve as Co-Coordinator of the San Diego Associates group to succeed Suzanne Strassburger. 

Mary Jane Tiernan has been a long-time Associate, since the Associates actually started in San Diego. She is very committed and engaged in both the spirit, prayer, and the monthly meetings that occur from September to June each year. She is very much a Sacred Heart person: an alum, a friend of many RSCJ, and a faithful member of the San Diego Community of Associates. She is a woman of prayer. She actively supports the Associates activities all these years. She is a very caring member of this community of women who strive to grow in deeper relationship with God, and to live each day the grace of having known the love of the Sacred Heart of Jesus.

We are grateful to Mary Jane for her willingness to serve in this capacity. 

We also want to thank Suzanne for her years of service as Co-Coordinator of the San Diego group.

-Jane Steinfels, Associates Committee

Spirituality Committee Survey Results - Part I

In early February, the Spirituality Committee of the Province Associates Committee sent out a simple survey via email to each Associate and we are grateful for the wonderful responses received. It was especially heartening to see that we received an excellent response! We would like to share the responses with you so that you, too, might have a better sense of just who the RSCJ Associates are.

At this moment there are 180+ Associates. This article represents the 120 persons who responded. 13 have been with us for less than one year. 19 have been an Associate for 1-3 years; 13, for 3-5 years; 30, for 5-10 years; 29, for 10-15 years; 14, for 15-20 years; and 2 people have been an Associate for 20+ years. Associates range in age. Almost 70% of the Associates are in the 60-79 year old age group.19% are 59 or below while almost 11% are above age 80.

The question dealing with meeting attendance was encouraging as almost 75% of the Associates said that they attended almost every meeting and only 2% are unable to attend meetings at this time. 23% are able to attend occasionally.
And now to a very exciting part of the survey…

The question was asked, “What is your professional experience? Your background and expertise?”

Associates are artists, painters, graphic designers, production managers and editors and some work in retail as buyers and managers in sales. One Associate describes herself as,” a community organizer, engaging faith leaders and communities in solidarity with low-wage workers and immigrant communities in pursuit of racial justice.” Many Associates are in health care either as RNs in Hospice and Palliative Care or as lab technicians, hospital chaplains or as health care managers, nurse practitioners, medical technologists, or physicians. Some are psychologists or campus ministers. One is a healing touch practitioner. Some are involved in spiritual direction. 54 Associates are or were involved in the field of education either as administrators, college professors, guidance counselors, CCD or classroom teachers. We have lawyers and investors and realtors and accountants and fundraisers and journalists. One is a vocalist in her parish and also runs the parish food pantry. One has spent her career working in the space industry. Some are housewives; many are volunteers in various capacities. One defines her expertise as being a grandmother, another as “being a friend”. (Hopefully we all fit into that category!)
So this is who we are…


Next month we will explore what other interests Associates have and will also report on Associates' opinion with regards to the present identity statement. We will also share with you the response to the question “How does Sacred Heart Spirituality impact your life?” We will also report on the responses to the question “How do you envision the relationship between the Religious of the Sacred Heart and Associates in the USC Province evolving over the next ten years?”

-Sue Whalen, Associates Committee