Responding to the murder last week of the two Sisters in Mississippi, their congregations, the Sisters of Charity of Nazareth (Nazareth, KY) and the School Sisters of St. Francis (Milwaukee, WI), issued a joint statement, saying: “We two Congregations, ask that we move forward together at this time in a prayerful and healing manner, focusing on the lives of Srs. Paula Merrill and Margaret Held, two compassionate, faith-filled women. We want to reiterate our beliefs as women of faith, that we value life. For years now the Sisters of Charity of Nazareth and the School Sisters of St. Francis have worked to abolish the death penalty, even as we seek justice and truth. Let us hold everyone involved in prayer.”
Dominican Sisters of Peace stand in solidarity with these two congregations in this time of mourning for two precious lives cut short. With them, we also reaffirm our opposition to the death penalty as a solution for crime.
Our Dominican Sister of Peace Marilyn Pierson, OP, worked at a clinic in Tutwiler, MI, for many years and knew both Sisters. She commented, “So sad for everyone – Paula and Margaret, their families and congregations, the other religious ministering in Mississippi, the people of Durant and Mississippi and those of us who knew them. When I worked in Tutwiler, they were nurse practitioners at DePorres Health Clinic in Marks, 20 miles north. Such caring and generous Sisters!”
We invite you to watch the video, “Prayer service and statement from the School Sisters of St. Francis and the Sisters of Charity of Nazareth.”