Citizens of God's Household

Citizens of God's Household

“So you are no longer aliens or foreign visitors; you are fellow citizens with the holy people of God and part of God’s household.” (Ephesians 2:19)

God’s household—our human family—now has more people who are displaced from their homelands than ever before. Nearly 66 million people are uprooted from home. Many of these people emigrate from all that is familiar because they are desperate for a secure life that is not possible in their countries of origin. They become immigrants and refugees and often are treated—not as members of the family of God—but as unwelcome aliens and foreigners.

Our founder, Father Samuel Mazzuchelli, OP, organized a small group of immigrant women who were our first Sinsinawa Sisters to provide education for immigrant children in 19th-century Wisconsin. By 1900, our early Sisters were also educating the children of immigrants in Illinois; Minnesota; Nebraska; Missouri; and Washington, DC. Our Congregation grew and expanded with the immigrant populations that came to this country.

Today, our Sisters serve immigrant communities in a variety of ways, including:

• Providing pastoral ministry to undocumented immigrants working in factories and farms in Iowa;

• Assuring quality education to children of Latin American agricultural workers in Florida;

• Offering legal assistance to immigrants struggling to become citizens; and

• Volunteering in literacy centers teaching English language to immigrants from various countries.

Most of our Sisters are descendants of immigrants who came to the United States in search of a better life. Some are descendants of people who were forcibly carried to these shores in slave ships. A few others have ancestors among the Native Peoples of this continent. In this issue of Dominican Vision, we learn the stories of several of our Sisters who personally experienced what it means to have been immigrants or refugees. Their stories challenge us to renew our determination to embrace immigrants and refugees in our midst as our sisters and brothers, all citizens in God’s household.

​Sister Toni Harris, OP

Prioress of the Congregation

(08 January 2018)