The land of the Cross Tipped Churches
Dave Eck • Director of Communications
Early one Sunday morning in January of 2007, I drove to Carthagena in west-central Ohio to cover the dedication of the St. Charles Senior Living Center, a former Precious Blood seminary that had been converted to apartments for seniors.
It was my first trip to the Land of the Cross Tipped Churches.
Driving among the cornfields and farms that appeared to have come straight off the pages of a Town & Country magazine, I noticed the spires. In all directions, steeples arose in the distance, encouraging me to visit the historic churches. I stopped at St. Sabastian, built in 1904, and admired the beautiful interior that had recently been renovated. I silently prayed in the simple sanctuary at St. Aloysius and walked through the cemetery at St. John the Baptist.
With every step, every stop, I felt the influence of the Precious Blood sisters, brothers and priests who have formed the spiritual development of the entire area. Through their ministries in the parishes and schools they built a culture of hard work, strong morals and dedication to the Eucharist.
Though I have been to the area many times in the last eight years, I reflected on that first visit during the dedication of the renovated Heritage Museum at the Maria Stein Shrine in June.
Among the new galleries in the museum is one dedicated to the dozens of Catholic churches in the region. Visitors can learn about the churches, how they came to be built and what makes the entire area so inspirational.
The museum also tells the story of how the Sisters of the Precious Blood were founded and their expansion to Ohio and the lasting impact they’ve had on the people of Mercer and Auglaize counties. The six galleries lead visitors through that story so very well.
If you’ve never been to Maria Stein, or visited the churches, please, go. The peace and the prayer will nourish your faith.
In this issue of Sharing & Caring, we also introduce 14 Sisters who are celebrating milestone anniversaries this year. Congratulations!
You will learn more about the new community council, elected at the General Assembly. Thank you, Sisters, for giving your time and talents to leadership.