2 Spanish-speaking among new women’s commission members
Photo Caption: Members of the Bishop’s Commission on Women in the Church and in Society met with Bishop Jenky earlier this month to welcome new members and discuss priorities for the coming year.
Members of the Bishop’s Commission on Women in the Church and in Society had much to celebrate at their annual meeting with Bishop Daniel R. Jenky, CSC, earlier this month, but there is still much to do, according to president Linda Howley-Skuby.
In response to a concern raised by Bishop Jenky last year, the group has recruited two Spanish-speaking members so the commission can reach out to even more women in the Diocese of Peoria, she told The Catholic Post. With his blessing, they also updated their bylaws to add a multicultural liaison to the membership.
“We want to build the commission,” Howley-Skuby explained. “This is a huge diocese. We want everyone to be represented.”
Helping them to do that is Elsa Krishnaswamy, a member of St. Mary’s Parish in Bloomington, and Martina Miranda-Lugo, a member of St. Mary’s Parish in Champaign. Also new to the commission are Sandi Calvin, a member of St. Mary’s Parish in Bloomington, vice president, and Robin Poston and Jean Vinciguerra, both from Epiphany Parish, Normal.
Continuing their terms are Julie Enzenberger of St. Patrick’s in Hennepin, immediate past president; Susan Real of St. Mary’s in Henry, secretary; Susan Redman of St. Patrick’s Church of Merna in Bloomington, treasurer; and Madeleine Robinson of St. Louis in Princeton. Howley-Skuby belongs to St. Mary’s in Bloomington.
Their spiritual adviser is Msgr. Don Fitzpatrick, a senior priest who lives at St. Augustine Manor in Peoria.
Leaving the commission were Joanne Dorn of Congerville; Maria Serrano of Peoria; Mary Monical and Paula Trainor-Rosenbaum of Pontiac; and Katie Lowery of Spring Valley. Agnes Christman of Danville, former president of the commission, resigned a year early to serve as vice president of the Diocese of Peoria’s Council of Catholic Women.
In addition to discussing how they can reach and welcome Spanish-speaking Catholics, commission members reviewed their October day of recollection with Father David Whiteside, pastor of St. Patrick’s in Havana and Immaculate Conception in Manito, and started making plans for next year.
Howley-Skuby said Bishop Jenky shared his concerns about how church teaching has clashed with public policy and state laws, such as in the case of Catholic Charities and licensing regulations regarding foster care and adoption services.
“He said we as laity have to become stronger and more visible and make our concerns known to our legislators so our religious liberties are not taken away,” she told The Post. “We have to be alert and aware of what is happening in the legislature and how it is affecting us.”
Howley-Skuby said commission members appreciate Bishop Jenky’s concern for them and the people they serve.
“He cares so much about this country and our church,” she said. “We’re so thrilled to have that time with him.”
Established 25 years ago, the Bishop’s Commission on Women in the Church and in Society seeks to promote the dignity and gifts of Catholic women in the Diocese of Peoria. Members have sought to do this by acting as an advisory group on women’s concerns to the bishop, helping women to become holier and closer to God, and encouraging women to teach their families and the community consistent Catholic tradition.