In her words
I feel so blessed to be able to work at a church because they [faith and work] don’t seem separate at all. . . . I feel like I’m probably the luckiest person in the world, just to be able to have a job where all my life work with my faith journey is utilized instead of compartmentalized. It’s really a gift.
One time we took some parishioners to Guatemala. . . . We went on a 3-mile hike into the mountains and had a Mass celebrated in the language of Quichi.
As we spent time there trying to be present, a group of people came to us — health promoters — and thanked us for our presence and thanked us for helping to bring prenatal vitamins. They said, ‘We’re burying our children and we’re burying our parents because we don’t have clean water.’
This water was killing them. So, we applied our faith. . . . The parish has raised over $250,000 to get water filter systems in each home, and we’re halfway there.
We shared the story and [the project] just spread like wildfire here. It connected with everybody’s sense of so basic a need, of water and people without [it]. It’s just been amazing. We’ve been going down there since the year 2001. The water project began in 2007. That was fun. It’s still awesome.
The example of Archbishop [Harry] Flynn has been immense in my life. I can get project oriented, I can get driven, my type A can step in, and all I have to do is see his picture, and I remember what’s [important]. It’s really the person in front of you, and that slows me down and helps me to pay attention to what’s really [important].
You can talk about the dignity of human life. Archbishop Flynn just exemplified to me that dignity of each individual because he gave you 100 percent of his attention when he was with you. We share a common dream and we share this dignity of human life.
Organization: St. Patrick, Edina
Title: Social justice coordinator
Parish: St. Patrick, Edina
Children: Charlotte, Christopher, Theresa, John, Patrick, Elizabeth
Activities: Volunteer at Sharing and Caring Hands (tutoring) and organizer of parish groups that go there, running, reading