By Christina Capecchi
A new national curriculum is being developed at the University of the Incarnate Word. “Called & Consecrated: Exploring the Lives of Women Religious” introduces middle- and high school students to Catholic sisters by illuminating their ministries and sharing their stories. Available online in Spanish and English and accessible on a variety of digital devices, the engaging curriculum consists of five concise educational units and includes videos of interviews with women religious.
The curriculum is part of the National Catholic Sisters Project, an initiative intended to raise awareness of women religious funded by the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation. Dr. Ann D. David, assistant professor in the Dreeben School of Education, oversees curriculum development. Catechists Alejandra Herrera ’16 BA, Amanda Murillo, Liz Ortiz, a UIW Pastoral Institute student, and Rose Radkowski are writing the curriculum.
“Relatively few young people today know an actual sister,” David said. “Their stories need to be told.” Catholic schoolteachers and parish catechists across the country have begun to implement the curriculum already. What’s more, she is receiving enthusiastic feedback from teachers.
“This curriculum is life changing,” said Rosi Cortez, director of mission and ministry at St. Anthony Catholic High School and a UIW graduate student. “It empowered our students to not only see sisters through a different lens but to see the potential within themselves.”
Sister Marian Batho CSJ, the Archdiocese of Boston’s delegate for religious, is sharing the curriculum with local parishes and her Office of Catholic Schools. “I am very impressed with the women who designed this curriculum. Kudos to the University of the Incarnate Word!” For more information and to access the curriculum, visit nationalcatholicsistersproject.org.
Photos by Chris Stokes.