New leadership team installed

3-photos_new-leadership-team-installedTop, President Sister Joyce Lehman accepts a crucifix from former President Sister Florence Seifert during the installation Mass for the new Community Council. The crucifix, which was displayed in Loewenberg Castle during the time Mother Maria Anna Brunner lived there, is traditionally presented to the new president by her predecessor at the Mass; middle, the new council. From left back, Sisters Ceil Taphorn, vice president; Patty Kremer, councilor; Linda Pleiman, councilor; Joyce Lehman, president. Front, Sister Nancy Kinross, councilor. Dave Eck photos. Bottom, President Joyce Lehman, back center, with former presidents Sisters Maryann Bremke, back left; Joyce Langhals, back right; Charmaine Grilliot, front left and Florence Seifert. Sister Mary Lou Schmersal photo

It was a day of ceremony and tradition as the new Sisters of the Precious Blood Community Council was installed at a special Mass Aug. 2 at Salem Heights in Dayton.

Friends, family and other Precious Blood Sisters looked on as Sister Joyce Lehman, president, accepted a crucifix dating to the early 19th century as a symbol of the self-giving to which she is called in lead­ership. The crucifix was dis­played in Loewenberg Castle in Switzerland when Maria Anna Brunner, foundress of the Sis­ters of the Precious Blood, lived there. As is tradition during the installation ceremony, former President Sister Florence Seifert presented the crucifix.

During the ritual of installa­tion, Sister Joyce and Council­ors Sisters Ceil Taphorn, Pa­tricia Kremer, Nancy Kinross and Linda Pleiman recited their commitment to serve the community in leadership. All Precious Blood Sisters then read aloud the community’s mission statement.

Missionary of the Precious Blood Father Ken Pleiman, Sis­ter Linda’s brother, celebrated the Mass.

“This is a beautiful day for the Sisters of the Precious Blood as you install new leadership for four more years,” Fr. Ken said. “This is about being called.”

In his homily, Fr. Ken spoke of the prophet Isaiah who responded to God’s call, much as the Sisters do today.

“We are a community of be­lievers sent out into the world,” Father Ken said. “Regardless of where they are, Precious Blood Sisters minister to those in their midst. God calls us to serve in the here and now.”

Former Presidents Sisters Maryann Bremke, Charmaine Grilliot, Joyce Langhals and Florence served as ministers at the Mass. More than 130 people, including Precious Blood Sisters from across the United States and Chile attended the liturgy.

A reception for the new coun­cil was held.

The new leadership team was elected during the commu­nity’s 2015 General Assembly in June. Sister Joyce was re-elected president while Sisters Nancy, Ceil and Linda were re-elected to council. Sister Ceil was elected vice-president. Sis­ter Patricia was elected to her first term on council.

Sister Patricia, a Cincinnati native, has been principal of St. Christopher School in Van­dalia, Ohio, since 1993 and has ministered in education for more than 30 years.

A native of Ottoville, Ohio, Sister Joyce previously minis­tered at the Diocese of Toledo as director of pastoral plan­ning and secretariat leader for pastoral leadership.

Sister Nancy, a Cincinnati native, has been a teacher and administrator, executive director of UNDA-USA, and has worked with non-profit pro­grams providing services to under-served residents of the greater Cincinnati area. Sister Linda, who also serves as the congregation’s treasurer, is a former teacher and adminis­trator. She was born in Sidney, Ohio. Sister Ceil, who grew up in Cincinnati, has been active in pastoral ministry, educa­tion, administration, and inter-faith and justice and peace endeavors.

The team will serve until August 2019.

During the General Assem­bly meeting held at the Uni­versity of Dayton’s Virginia Kettering Hall Conference Center, Precious Blood Sisters set directions to guide them in the next four years.

These include initiatives related to promoting their charism of spirituality of the Precious Blood of Jesus, soli­darity with the marginalized and fostering reconciliation, and acting responsibly related to our planet’s resources.

Story by Dave Eck

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