Communities of Spirit
Hearts for Ministry
March 8-14, 2020
Catholic Sisters Week shines a light on the spirituality, mission and community building of women religious.
Fifty-two weeks a year women religious stand with the poor and immigrants, teach children, fight injustice, heal the sick, share spirituality, empower women, defend the planet, promote peace, create community, offer hope …
But for one week, March 8-14, we shine the spotlight on women religious and encourage a wide range of campaigns and events that invite all who follow Jesus to
- expand and support their gospel witness
- grow the service networks they have seeded
- share their spirituality, charisms, and community
- encourage young women to consider a vocation to religious life
- support their pastoral, teaching and prophetic works
- and focus on the new world they call into being.
2020 Catholic Sisters Week
Catholic Sisters Week (formerly National Catholic Sisters Week) is now under the direction of Communicators for Women Religious (CWR). In this transition year, you will notice both continuity and change, beginning with the name: CWR has renamed the initiative “Catholic Sisters Week,” signaling a desire to raise awareness of women religious not just in the United States but also internationally.
CWR has teamed with McDaniels Marketing, Pekin, IL, to once again provide Catholic Sisters Week participants with digital, video and print resources to support and increase awareness of the many local and grassroots events that have come to characterize this week. Download the complete toolkit here.
Our new web home, catholicsistersweek.org, will provide space for listing your events, gatherings, campaigns, and activities. This is also where you’ll come to find an event you want to attend, to make a local connection, sign on to an online event, or find ideas for your own events. Click here for a broad list of event and activity ideas. In the coming weeks, you will receive additional planning helps and guidelines if you sign up below. We’ll also notify you as soon as the online event calendar is ready so you can add your event.
Due to grant restrictions, funds for mini-grants for Catholic Sisters Week participants will not be available in 2020, nor will NCSW-in-a-box or NCSW t-shirts.
Who makes Catholic Sisters Week happen?
We encourage women religious communities and congregations and those directly connected with them:
- associates, oblates, third orders, agrégées
- donors, benefactors, and other collaborators
- friends and family members
- parishioners, clients, students, and alumnae
- Nuns & Nones groups, spirituality seekers
- and anyone who longs to be light, build community and love fearlessly
to join us March 8-14. Plan an event or campaign, join the social media effort, attend a local event. Sign up now to receive alerts.
About Communicators for Women Religious
Communicators for Women Religious is a professional organization of communicators within religious congregations of women. CWR members promote an understanding of women religious, enhance their image and advance their mission. Catholic Sisters Week and the efforts and events associated with it dovetail seamlessly with the overall mission of CWR.
Who are Women Religious?
They are vowed women who give public witness to Christ through a diversity of ministerial works such as teaching, pastoral care, health care, retreat, and spirituality programs and a multitude of other outreach efforts. They often work on the frontlines of global change, striving to improve various aspects of society, especially for those on the margins. For example, today this can mean efforts to reverse the climate crisis, work for immigration reform, upholding human rights, and other social justice concerns. While prayer and community are integral to the lives of all women religious, some are called to live cloistered lives dedicated full-time to contemplative prayer.
What is a charism?
While each congregation or community of women religious give witness to the gospel, they do it through their unique charism or gift of the spirit. How that gift is lived can change as the world changes and as the membership of the community shifts. Today, many congregations are living their charisms more broadly through the work of non-vowed women and men who make formal commitments to these charisms as associates, oblates, agrégées, or third orders.
Catholic Sisters Week and Women’s History Month
Catholic Sisters Week began in 2015 as a part of National Women’s History Month. It is now an official component of Women’s History Month. It was authorized by Molly Murphy MacGregor, co-founder of National Women’s History Project, who was educated and deeply influenced by Catholic sisters. In 1981, Women’s History Month launched as a single week. By 1987, U.S. Congress formally expanded it to the full month of March.