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December 20, 2013

New Providence Associates commit to works of love, mercy, justice

TERRE HAUTE — Recently 21 Providence Associates pledged “to make a commitment that will honor Divine Providence and further God’s loving plans through works of love, mercy and justice in service among God’s people.” Most did so in a ceremony Nov. 9 in the Church of the Immaculate Conception at St. Mary-of-the-Woods.

Each new associate was companioned by a Sister of Providence or another Providence associate over the past year. Together they met to study, pray and reflect on the spirit of the congregation.

The Sisters of Providence is a congregation of more than 300 Roman Catholic women religious dedicated to serving others through works of love, mercy and justice. Their motherhouse is 10 minutes northwest of downtown Terre Haute. The congregation was founded in 1840 by Saint Mother Theodore Guerin.

Associates are women and men of diverse faith traditions who enter into a formal relationship with the Sisters. Associates often are seeking to deepen their spiritual lives and to consciously join in the mission of love, mercy and justice in service among God’s people.

Making first commitments as associates are:

From Terre Haute: Michelle Davis, Felisa Javier-Holt, Dottie L. King, Mickie Lane-Fredericks, Karen Sagraves and Tina Soules.

From elsewhere in Indiana: Lee Plahitko Crislip and Kaitlyn Willy of Indianapolis, Judy Coulup Hund and Joan Townsend of Fishers, Jude Magers of Carmel and Jennifer Odle of Charlottesville. From Illinois: Pat Bowen of Yale, Mary Pat Dailey Cross of Wilmette and Betty Tate Thorne of Chicago. Joining them were William Seth Adams and Amy Donohue-Adams of Langley, Wash; April Bradley of Cathedral City, Calif.; Li-Chih (Maria) Wang Fan of Arlington, Texas; Sheila Galvin of Louisville, Ky.; and Paula Marie Thompson of Fayetteville, W.Va.

“I am proof that the sacredness of the space and the mission of the sisters reaches everyone that touches them,” Lee Crislip said of her journey.

King, president of St. Mary-of-the-Woods College, said that her choice to enter into a formal relationship with the Sisters “reflects my reality. I find myself in relationships with many sisters and these relationships are mentoring, encouraging and defining.” King’s hope, she said, is to use her associate relationship “to enhance the role of the sisters’ charism at the college and to continue my own faith journey.”

The new group brings to 193 the number of associates in the United States and Taiwan, a response that few people imagined possible when the Providence Associate Relationship was created seven years ago. To make communication easier and to foster even closer connections, 12 Providence Circle meeting groups have been formed in the past year. Ten are geographical and two are online. Another 28 people began the journey in October as candidate-associates.

There is no canonical, financial or legal obligation to one another on the part of the associates or the congregation.

For more information, contact Sister Diane Mason, director of Providence Associates, at 708-364-7917 or or find more information at


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