The U.S. Province of Presentation Sisters is delighted to welcome Sister Anne O’Leary back to their unit. Anne is no stranger to the province. In August 2006, Anne took up a position teaching Scripture at St Mary’s University, San Antonio. She then transferred from the South West Province, Ireland – where she belonged for 25 years – to the U.S. Province. While in San Antonio, Anne formed community, first with the sisters at Arbor Place and later with the community at Callaghan Road.
In 2009, the call to serve in the ministry of leadership emerged and Anne was elected to the province leadership team of the U.S. province. This call took a new direction in 2012, when she was elected to serve on the congregational leadership team of the Union, which she did until August 2018.
From September 2018–May 2019, Anne enjoyed a period of sabbatical time in Rome. While there, she attended the Pontifical Biblical Institute and resided at the Pontifical Irish College. “It was a wonderful time of rest and renewal in body, mind and spirit,” says Anne. “It was amazing to experience people of faith ‘from every nation, race, people and tongue’ (Rev 7:9). And it was profoundly challenging to reflect on the birth of the church and walk in the footsteps of early martyrs; to contemplate the love they had for Christ and how that speaks to the mission of the church today.”
This past year, Anne felt the call of God to return again to serving the mission of the church in the world through Scripture scholarship. Providentially, Anne’s deepest desire matched a need at the Oblate School of Theology, San Antonio, Texas. Oblate is a place which educates, forms and renews men and women “to preach the Gospel to the most abandoned.” This is done through offering degree and certificate programmes, programmes designed for renewal (e.g. Ministry to Ministers), retreats, spiritual direction, continuing education and more. [https://ost.edu/]
This fall, Anne re-joined the community at Callaghan Road and the ministerial community at Oblate, taking up the role of assistant professor of Scripture. “It is early days yet,” Anne reflects, “but I feel blessed to be back in the province and look forward to connecting with Presentation Sisters and people all over the U.S. I also feel very privileged to get the opportunity to be involved in education and formation at Oblate where the call is to grow together as disciples. In the vision of St Eugene de Mazenod (1782-1861), founder of the OMIs, whose wish was ‘to leave nothing undared for the Gospel,’ I see and hear a word-icon that captures the life and vision of Nano Nagle. And so, the call of St Eugene becomes my call too.”
To Anne, we extend a very hearty warm Presentation welcome back. We wish her very many blessings as she begins this new chapter among us.