March 9, 2017
Sisters from a religious order in Colombia are progressing in steps to establish a permanent home here in the Diocese of Kalamazoo. Misioneras Siervas del Divino Espiritu (Missionary Sisters of the Holy Spirit) arrived in the Diocese in 2014 due to the generosity of Catholic Extension’s U.S.-Latin American Sisters Exchange Program.
The grant program awards funding religious sisters from Latin American congregations who will come to minister among Latino immigrant populations in a “mission diocese” in the United States. It would be the first foundation of the Order established in the United States. Currently, Sisters Maryud Cortes and Yuliana Rua live on the grounds of San Felipe de Jesus Mission Parish in Fennville.
Last month Bishop Bradley along with Rev. Fabio Garzon, Pastor, St. Peter Parish, Douglas, San Felipe de Jesus, Fennville and Immaculate Conception, Hartford, travelled to La Ceja, in the Diocese of Medellin, Colombia. During his visit, Bishop Bradley met with Mother Consuelo, as well as Bishop Fidel, for continued discussions on the sisters establishing a permanent foundation order in the Diocese of Kalamazoo.
In his letter of gratitude to Mother Consuelo Bishop Bradley stated, “…It [is] also a grace to review with you the wonderful work currently being done by the Sisters in Fennville and in many other parts of our Diocese, and to see the fruitfulness borne of their love and deep commitment to the Lord Jesus. For these and so many other reasons, I am very happy to grant permission to begin the process of canonically erecting a foundation of your Religious Community within the territory of the Diocese of Kalamazoo.
Aware of the time and effort that this will require, it is nonetheless an historic moment and an exciting opportunity to see the establishment of a Community of Sisters for the first time in our Diocese since 1889. We have already begun to prepare, and look forward to bringing this project to realization with the help of the Lord.”
The canonical process to establish a foundation can take a period of time as the request is submitted to the Vatican. Meanwhile the Sisters continue their ministry to the growing Hispanic/Latino community.
For a detailed account of Bishop Bradley’s pastoral visit to Colombia visit: