For further information on any of the news items listed here, please contact Alice Black, PhD, OPA, Director of Communications & Mission Advancement, at 614-416-1020.


Dominican Sister of Peace Joan Marie Hill

Dominican Sister of Peace Joan Marie Hill

Dominican Sister of Peace Joan Marie (James Michael) Hill (88) died at the Ohio State East Hospital in Columbus, OH, on December 21, 2019.

A native of Dorchester, MA, Sr. Joan Marie was one of seven children born to Marie Furlotte and Douglas Hill. Given her love of crafts and group activities, she must have been a wonderful sister to her siblings, as she was a wonderful Sister to those of us in her Congregation for more than 68 years.

Sr. Joan Marie studied at St. Catharine College in St. Catharine, KY, and continued her studies in Theology at DePaul University. Her first ministry was in teaching, and she shaped the hearts and minds of elementary school students in Illinois, Kentucky, Louisiana and Massachusetts for nearly 12 years. But a brief time working at Sansbury Care Center stirred an interest in nursing. She believed that “Nursing brings the church’s ministry to the lost, the last, and the least among us.”

Sr. Joan Marie continued working as an aide at Sansbury while she studied to earn her LPN from the Appalachian School of Practical Nursing in Lexington, KY.

After earning her LPN, Sr. Joan Marie brought her ministry of care to patients at Mary Immaculate Hospital, Sansbury Care Center, and the Nazareth Home, all in Kentucky, as a staff nurse.

Even after retirement, Sr. Joan Marie continued to serve the “least among us” as a volunteer to the elderly at the Nazareth Home, the St. Catharine Motherhouse, and the Sacred Heart Village.

Sr. Joan Marie entered a ministry of prayer and service at the St. Catharine Motherhouse in 2013, joining in many Community activities. Sisters throughout the Dominican family knew Sr. Joan for her famous bourbon ball candies and her welcoming hospitality.

When Sister Joan Marie moved to the Columbus Motherhouse in 2017, she immediately became an active member of the Community and a willing volunteer. Her final ministry of prayer and presence was a blessing to all.

She is preceded in death by her parents, Douglas and Marie Furlatte Hill, her brothers, James, Fred, Douglas, Raymund, a step-brother, James DeWolfe and her sister Veronica Hamel. She is survived by several nieces.

A Vigil of Remembrance Service was held at the Dominican Sisters of Peace Motherhouse Chapel in Columbus, Ohio on December 27, 2019. The funeral liturgy was held at the Dominican Sisters of Peace Motherhouse Chapel on December 28, 2019. Sr. Joan Marie was interred at St. Joseph Cemetery by Egan Ryan Funeral Home.

Memorial gifts in Sr. Joan Marie’s memory may be sent to:
Dominican Sisters of Peace
Office of Mission Advancement
2320 Airport Dr. Columbus, OH 43219.

To donate in Sr. Joan Marie’s Hill memory, please click here.

To view or print this memorial, please click here.

Posted in Obituaries

Hugs are Important

Blog by Associate Michelle Gray

Hi. My name is Michelle and I am a hugger. I always have been.

To me, a hug is the best way to say hello or goodbye, I love you, I’ll miss you, I’m sorry.

My goodbye hugs when leaving my daughters at college are a family legend; I insisted on a 30 second hug, which of course left us all laughing. But I admit I never gave my penchant for hugging much thought until recently, when I read an article on Facebook.

It began with the quote: Hugging is the most beautiful form of communication that allows the other person to know beyond a doubt that they matter.

That they matter — so simple and so easy. And so needed in these divisive times. And, quite frankly, I don’t think we hug each other enough. And I don’t know why.

About a year ago, my daughter’s best friend lost her mother. I didn’t see Annie until she came into the flower shop where I work to order flowers. I hugged her as soon as she walked in the door. Then, through our tears, we ordered the arrangements. It wasn’t until later that evening that Annie told my daughter I was the first person who had hugged her. And I admit I was shocked because a hug is my first instinct.

Current social conventions do have us conditioned not to touch others not closely related to us. I must say I really don’t agree.

And I have good company. According to a Healthline Media Inc. article, family therapist Virginia Satir once said, “We need four hugs a day for survival. We need eight hugs a day for maintenance. We need 12 hugs a day for growth.”  Hugs have been shown to reduce stress, pain, and fear. Hugs can make us happier and allow us to connect emotionally with others.

My job has given me the opportunity to offer hugs to grieving people, some of whom I know, many of whom I had just met. But I know without a doubt that those hugs left us both feeling a bit better.

If you would indulge me for a minute, I would ask you to place your right hand on your left shoulder and your left hand on your right shoulder. Now squeeze gently for as long you need for a hug from me. And know that you are cared for and loved.

Posted in Associate Blog, News

Immersed in the Mission

Blog by Sr. Beata Tiboldi

For the last few days, I’ve been at the Mission Immersion experience with the Vocation team and with a few other women. We chose to come to New Orleans for several reasons. First, because even though it has been 15 years since Hurricane Katrina hit the city, it still hasn’t recovered fully yet, and secondly, we have a rich congregational history in the city, as our sisters have been in the Crescent City since 1860.

We planned the five-day mission immersion specifically to respond to the most direct needs of the city: caring for the homeless and providing much needed affordable housing. We cooked and served a meal for families at Hotel Hope, which is a short-term residence for homeless women and their children. On weekday mornings, we helped to rebuild New Orleans through the  St. Bernard Project, which is an organization whose goal is to shrink the time between disaster and recovery. Each day, we started and closed the day with prayer, asking God’s blessings upon those we served and praying for a more peaceful world.

In the afternoons, we met Dominican Sisters of Peace at their ministry sites, and when opportunity allowed, we immersed ourselves into the experience. We went to the Spirituality Center, where we met Sr. Dot Trosclair, OP, who guided us in a prayerful reflection. We visited  St. Mary’s Dominican High School, where we met a few of our Sisters, and learned from Dr. Cynthia Thomas and Mrs. Jill Cabes about how St. Mary’s continues to educate women in the Dominican tradition and challenge young women to excel, i.e. robotics program. The students were very articulate and

Sisters and discerners gather for a photo on a build site with the St. Bernard Project in New Orleans.

excited to share what they were learning. That evening, we listened to Sr. Kathy Broussard, OP, as she shared about her ministry. As a Death Penalty Mitigation Specialist, she advocates for those who are facing the death penalty and works to save their lives. The importance of her ministry, her compassion, and her passion for this ministry left us speechless. We also visited the Peace Center, where we learned about our Sisters’ ministry to the Gert Town neighborhood community of New Orleans and interacted with the students who attend the after-school program there. The Sisters also treated us with a delicious jambalaya meal. We also talked to one of the Dominican friars, Fr. John G. Resrepo, O.P at St. Dominic’s parish, where we learned how Katrina effected the parish.

We are very grateful to Sisters Kathy Broussard, OP and Sr. Binh Nguyen, OP, whose hospitality, witness of what community-life is about, and witness of faith were transformative.

The Mission Immersion group met with Fr. John G. Resrepo, O.P at St. Dominic’s parish, to discuss the effect of Hurricane Katrina on
the parish.

The women who participated in this immersion experience left everything behind, traveled hundreds of miles to experience the ‘unknown’ when our mission asks us to be open to bring God’s presence where ever God is calling us to do that. This reminded me of the song from Frozen 2: Into the unknown, or click on this link:

In the movie, there is a voice that only Elsa, the main character, can hear. She is trying to ignore it at first, but then she investigates what that voice is and where the voice is calling her to find truth. When you feel nudged by God, what helps you staying open and attentive to God’s nudging?

Here are a few lines from the song to ponder, and click on the link for the entire song. I can imagine that those who came to this week’s mission immersion may have pondered these lines before they came.

“There’s a thousand reasons I should go about my day,  and ignore your whispers which I wish would go away.”

 “I’ve had my adventure; I don’t need something new. I’m afraid of what I’m risking if I follow you.”

“What do you want? ‘Cause you’ve been keeping me awake. (…)

“Are you someone out there who’s a little bit like me? Who knows deep down I’m not where I’m meant to be?”

“Where are you going? Don’t leave me alone. How do I follow you into the unknown?”

Elsa left everything behind to find truth. There is so much going on in the world. What are we willing to do to keep searching for truth, and speak truth to power?

We experience in the movie the importance of processing things, and that there is a place for transformation as long as we keep asking our questions. If you feel nudged by God, I encourage you with a line from Olaf’s song, When I am older: “someday I will see that this makes sense.” Will it make sense? Pray with the question where God is calling you, and see where it takes you. If you would like to talk to a Sister, contact us at

To view photos from our week, please go to our Facebook page, and view posting between January 4-8, 2020.



Posted in God Calling?

Dominican Sister of Peace Amata Dawson

Dominican Sister of Peace Sr. Amata Dawson

Dominican Sister of Peace Amata Dawson (Marie Anna Ida) (96) died at the Mohun Health Care Center in Columbus, OH, on December 16, 2019.

The only daughter of Carolina Reed and Henry Dawson, Sr. Amata was born in Philadelphia, PA. She worked as a billing clerk before entering the Congregation in 1948, and was faithful to her calling to God and God’s people for more than 68 years.

Sr. Amata earned a Bachelor of Science in Home Economics from Marywood College in Scranton, PA. She earned certificates in Spiritual Direction from the Shalem Institute in Washington, DC; Theology from Temple University in Philadelphia, and a Master of Arts in Religious Education from Providence College. She also studied at the University of Montreal.

Sr. Amata was devoted to her long and varied ministry throughout her religious life. She served her Community at Congregational retreat houses in New Mexico, Virginia, Pennsylvania and New Mexico. She was  named Local Superior of the Media, PA, Motherhouse, served as Vocation Director and Candidate Director, and was elected President from 1972 to 1978 and 1986 to 1990.

Sr. Amata was also part of the Dominican Sisters Urban Activity in Washington, where she helped learners earn their GED and acted as a substitute teacher in the public school system. She continued her work with young people serving in campus ministry at the University of New Mexico.

Sr. Amata was always open to wherever the Holy Spirit would take her. She found centering prayer to be a deeply contemplative and fulfilling experience, and often prayed with her arms raised and hands open as though waiting for the blessings of God to come to her. Even when she lost the power of speech, Sr. Amata continued to preach peace through her loving ways and kind smiles.

She was preceded in death by her parents Henry Dawson and Caroline Reid Dawson, and a brother, Edward Dawson.

A Vigil of Remembrance Service was held at the Dominican Sisters of Peace Motherhouse Chapel, Columbus, Ohio on December 19, 2019. The funeral liturgy will be held at the Dominican Sisters of Peace Motherhouse Chapel on December 19. Burial will take place at a later date in Cheltenham, PA.

Memorial gifts in Sr. Amata’s memory may be sent to:

Dominican Sisters of Peace
Office of Mission Advancement
2320 Airport Dr. Columbus
OH 43219

or submitted securely on the Congregation’s website.

To download or print a copy of this memorial, please click here.


Posted in Obituaries

Dominican Sister of Peace Margaret Walsh

Dominican Sister of Peace Sr. Margaret Walsh

Dominican Sister of Peace Margaret (Sr. Justina) Walsh (93) died on at the Mohun Health Care Center in Columbus, OH, on Sunday, December 15, 2019. Born in Peekskill, NY, to Mary Butler and Patrick Walsh, Sr. Margaret took a round-about route to religious life. She studied business at Columbia University, and eventually became the President and General Manager of a successful plumbing and heating business.

God had other plans for Margaret Walsh, however, and at the age of forty, she entered the Congregation, completing her formation with many women half her age. She took this situation in stride, as was her way, and made her final profession in 1971.

Sr. Margaret earned her Bachelor of Arts in Business from Ohio Dominican University in 1970, and her Masters of Business Administration from Xavier University in Cincinnati in 1980.

First Corinthians tells us that we are all given certain gifts to serve the Church, and Sr. Margaret certainly made use of hers. She used her experience as a businesswoman and her education to benefit both the Congregation and our ministries. She served as Director of Development and as Treasurer for the Congregation. She also served as Treasurer and Business Manager for Albertus Magnus College in Connecticut, and as the Director of Purchasing and Office Services for Ohio Dominican University in Columbus, OH. She began her final ministry of prayer and presence at the Mohun Health Care Center in 2015.

Sr. Margaret was not just a businesswoman – she was deeply spiritual and loved her friends and family. She enjoyed living in Community and taking part in its activities, loved reading, and had a wry sense of humor.

Sr. Margaret was also a gifted story-teller and entertained her Sisters at Mohun with tales from her ministries.

Sr. Margaret was preceded in death by her parents, Patrick and Mary Butler Walsh, and her brothers, Patrick, Thomas, Martin, William, John and James, and her sister Mary Jane Wietsma.  She is survived by her sister, Helen Walsh and many nieces and nephews.

A Vigil of Remembrance was held at the Dominican Sisters of Peace Motherhouse Chapel on December 20, 2019. The funeral liturgy was held at the Dominican Sisters of Peace Motherhouse Chapel on Saturday, December 21, 2019, followed by burial at St. Joseph Cemetery.

Memorial gifts in Sr. Margaret’s memory may be sent to:

Dominican Sisters of Peace
Office of Mission Advancement
2320 Airport Dr.
Columbus, OH 43219
or submitted securely at the Congregation’s website. 

To view or print a copy of this memorial, please click here.

Posted in Obituaries