Our religious community of women has witnessed Eucharistic life since 1947 in this hardworking, highly educated city [of Waterville] in central Maine. Many of our own Blessed Sacrament men religious came from this region, their vocations attributed to these faithful women. … [M]eeting the Superior General Sister Fe Manalo SSS, in Rome during an International Theological Commission meeting in November 2022, Sister Fe
also invited me to visit the sister’s Generalate in Sherbrook, Quebec, three hours northwest of Waterville. My journey this summer led me to see both communities, with a day trip and overnight in Sherbrooke.
…The SSS Vietnamese Province of Servants has immigrated to these two communities for six years. In Sherbrooke, there are 10 sisters (6 Vietnamese, 3 of the General Team, and one native Canadian), and in Waterville, there are 10 sisters (3 Americans in a nursing home nearby, 3 Americans in the convent, and 4 Vietnamese sisters). They keep the full regiment of prayer in both communities, following the church’s Liturgy of the Hours, singing the parts accompanied by an organ….
Their hospitality and care were outstanding! They were quite appreciative of having a visit, and it was amazing to learn of the history of both houses, the story of the sisters in Maine and Canada, and the development of the Aggregation of the Blessed Sacrament, especially with the sisters in these two communities creating a formation series. Many lay faithful attend their Liturgy of the Hours and Eucharist each day.
After my retreat in Maine, I traveled to our community at Saint Jean Baptiste in New York City….Several times a month, our SSS community hosts the Congregation of Notre Dame (CND) sisters, who eat with our community regularly. Father John Kamas SSS is usually the chef for these mutual meals. All live in the same building on different floors, our SSS on floor two and the CNDs on floors three, four, and five. There are 10 CND living in the community, and we have five religious Fathers Bernard Camiré, John Kamas, Jim Hayes, Ravi Earnest Sebastin, and Bro. Thomas Mella. It was a shortened visit by two hours, but a lovely meal, as always, by Chef Kamas.
Tuesday, June 27, I drove to Norwalk, Connecticut, to spend time with our Associates here. Ever since a LITE retreat was led by Father Anthony Schueller, Jim Brown (former CEE Director), and Mary Muehle (Highland Heights Associates co-leader) over 10 years ago under the direction of the pastor Father Michael Boccaccio (now an Associate of the Congregation), this group formed at Saint Philip Church.
Photos: [from top]
-Servants of the Blessed Sacrament and Associates in Waterville, Maine
-Father John Thomas Lane SSS pictured with the Servants of the Blessed Sacrament in Sherbrooke, Canada
-Associates at Saint Philip in Norwalk