Organ, piano, trumpets, tympani and melodic voices filled the Chapel of Mary Immaculate as the Sisters of Christian Charity, Mendham, NJ, began the commemoration of the 175th year of its founding with a liturgical celebration officiated by the Diocese of Paterson, Bishop Kevin J. Sweeney, on Monday, August 21. Sisters of the Eastern Province, members of the General Leadership from Germany, and guest SCCs of the Western Region attended.

Various commemorative activities taking place throughout 2023-2024 within the Diocese of Paterson are the SCC 10th Annual Golf Outing, Thursday, September 25 at Fiddler’s Elbow Golf Course and Country Club, Bedminster, NJ; Run for a Nun 5K Walk/Run, in-person/virtual, October 14, Natirar Park, Peapack-Gladstone, NJ; 175th Anniversary Liturgy and Reception, St. Nicholas Catholic Church, Wilkes-Barre, PA, November 4; Christmas Open House at Villa Pauline Retreat and Spiritual Center, First Motherhouse in the East, Sunday, December 10; A Jubilee Tea at the Villa, Thursday, May 2.

Foundress of the Sisters of Christian Charity, Pauline von Mallinckrodt was born on June 3, 1817, in Minden, Germany. As a young woman, she cared for the poverty-stricken families of Paderborn; nursed their sick and brought them food. In 1840, her charitable work extended to opening a kindergarten for young children and a school for blind children.

Pauline’s love for God and her care for those in need led her to consider a religious vocation. She was advised to begin her own community. On August 21, 1849, Pauline, together with three other women, began the Sisters of Christian Charity (SCC), which spread rapidly throughout Germany, then to North and South America and the Philippines.

As the needs of the Church changed, so did the Sisters’ ministries expand to meet those needs: education, healthcare and social works of various kinds. The Companions of Pauline carry on the work and spirit of Blessed Pauline. These women and men embrace Pauline’s vision and live in her spirit of prayer and loving, joyful service to others. Pauline von Mallinckrodt died April 30, 1881, and was beatified by Pope John Paul II on April 14, 1985.

The Sisters of Christian Charity have served in 19 states and in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia in the following schools and parishes: West Catholic, St. Maria Goretti, and Little Flower High Schools, St. Ignatius, Nativity of Mary, St. Aloysius, Our Lady Help of Christians, and St. Boniface.

Currently, the Sisters are serving at Our Lady of Port Richmond, St. Timothy Parish, St. Frances Cabrini, and St. Matthew.

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