Preserving the Gospel Stories of Today: Project Seeks to Record Catholic Experience under Communism

By Patterson, Margot | National Catholic Reporter, September 19, 2003 | Go to article overview

Preserving the Gospel Stories of Today: Project Seeks to Record Catholic Experience under Communism


Patterson, Margot, National Catholic Reporter


Sr. Mary Savoie and Sr. Margaret Nacke recently received a letter that underscored the importance of their efforts to preserve the history of the Christian experience in Central and Eastern Europe under communism.

"Your project is very necessary and I also would say urgent, if you wish to gather information from sisters who experienced religious life not only under the Soviets, but also those that had to go underground after their experience of 'free' religious life," wrote Sr. Igne Marijosius from Lithuania. "Just last week we buried one of our sisters, age 99, who was for 25 years superior general in the underground. Her stories went with her to eternal rest."

The desire to rescue such stories from the dustbin of history has galvanized Nacke and Savoie to begin collecting the personal recollections of those who suffered for their faith during the communist era. The two sisters of St. Joseph of Concordia, Kan., are still in the initial phase of their new ministry, but it develops out of experiences that go back to 1993 when they first began traveling to Romania to help with the re-establishment of the Catholic church after the fall of communism. Nacke and Savoie were among about 200 women religious who took part in efforts to help local churches in Central and Eastern Europe at the invitation of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops.

At the time, Nacke and Savoie said they had no thoughts of establishing the ambitious undertaking to which they are now devoting themselves. The idea for a center occurred to them only this past spring when the two women had a meeting in Kansas City, Mo., with the director of the Midwest Center for Holocaust Education, a daughter of Holocaust survivors. It was while listening to the director recount her family's history that the two sisters realized there was a need to establish a similar center that would preserve the stories of Catholics who had suffered persecution under communism because of their religious faith.

"When I was taking notes with her [the director], I kept putting in my notes the names of sisters who survived oppression and suffering and imprisonment," Savoie said.

Realizing that the accounts of those they had talked to over the years in Central and Eastern Europe would otherwise be lost, the two women decided to launch a drive to record, write and preserve the memories of those who testified to their faith and often suffered prison and even death because of it.

"We thought, 'Who is collecting their stories?' Just to honor their stories and to make them available to other people for our day and in the future. Their stories are so inspiring," Nacke said.

"These are the gospel stories of today," Savoie said.

The two women are beginning their project with a focus on women religious in Central and Eastern Europe and are contacting the leadership conferences of women religious in the seven countries that they have targeted: the Czech Republic, Romania, Bulgaria, Hungary, Lithuania, Slovakia and Ukraine. They hope to identify local nuns who can interview sisters active during the communist era and are raising funds for the costs of two years of research.

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Preserving the Gospel Stories of Today: Project Seeks to Record Catholic Experience under Communism
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.