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Celebrating 125 Years: 1895-2020

Passion for Mission in the United States

As we celebrate the 125th anniversary of coming to the USA throughout 2020, we invite you to take a step back in time with us. As of today, we’ve launched three time lines with historical milestones and stories that bring to life the experiences of our sisters who came before us.

Change. The word hung on the air through the decade of the ‘60s. It meant new stirrings worldwide. Despite the flurry of questions, the wondering and sometimes bewilderment, a breath of freshness swept the age-old Church. The period following the close of Vatican II was a time when more changes occurred in ten years than had taken place in the 400 years since the Council of Trent. It affected the Congregation as well. More changes took place in the North American Province in the decade of the 1960s and 1970s than had taken place since the foundation in Milwaukee in 1895.

These were the years of action on the civil rights front and the first rumblings of the anti-war movement. The mood of the nation ranged from optimism to anguish as riots and assassinations of brilliant young leaders rocked the countries sensibilities. But there were good things as well as people awoke to their social responsibilities in education, housing, voting rights and community living. It was a pendulum time for the Church and the country. No one seemed to know what sort of path lay ahead. Certainly, no one could predict what would be happening.

Sister Margaret Shekleton, SDS, Bending in Season ©1985

Era 3 | 1950-1970: Embracing Renewal

It’s only fitting that our first time line launch in 2020 is about embracing renewal. Entering into a new decade, change upon change disrupted the seemingly unchangeable lives of Catholic Sisters. The next twenty years would include world changers and decisions that altered life as the sisters knew it. Find our Era 3 timeline here: https://sistersofthedivinesavior.org/125years_1950to1970/

In case you missed it . . .

Era 1 | 1895-1920: Responding to Immigrant Needs

Our Era 1 time line explores how our pioneer sisters arrived in Milwaukee to serve the poor, immigrant Church. First as nurses, later as teachers, they established roots in the United States for future generations of sisters. Find our Era 1 timeline here: https://sistersofthedivinesavior.org/news-events/our-2020-celebration/125years-1895to1920/

Era 2 | 1920-1950: Expanding in an “American” Church

Following our first 25 years serving in the USA, education moved to the forefront and the Church looked to Catholic Sisters to staff schools. As the population grew with the post-war baby boom, our sisters’ mission evolved to meet the needs of a new generation. Our Era 2 time line dives further into Salvatorian Sisters expanding their apostolates: https://sistersofthedivinesavior.org/125years_1920to1950/ 

Throughout 2020, we’ll announce these additions to the time line with more stories to share:

1970-2000: Building Collaboration

2000-Today: Searching for New Footing in a Changing World

Salvatorian Sentiments

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