On March 11, 1953 sisters Monica Black, Annunciata Byrne and Martha Glaser of the Sisters of St. Benedict arrived by train from Sioux City, Iowa where their community had been located for 56 years. While the rest of the sisters stayed in Iowa, these three sisters moved north to Madison, Wisconsin, at the invitation of the Bishop, to build a monastery and open a girl’s high school.
Much has changed in the 65 years since the sisters stepped off the train and into a new adventure which would transform lives and land.
To celebrate the past, cherish the present and look forward to the future, the communities of Holy Wisdom Monastery will host events throughout the year in honor of the 65th anniversary.
- March 6, 2018, 6:00 – 7:30 pm. Opening reception of the Rooted in Faith, Transforming Lives—65 years in Photos exhibit. View photos of the people and events that made Holy Wisdom what it is today. Join the sisters in the Assembly Room to hear their personal stories. (See more information below)
- March 11, 2018, 9:00 am. Sunday Assembly Worship Service with special homily by Al Majkrzak. Potluck brunch will follow the service.
- Date TBA. Summer on the Prairie. A family-friendly event on monastery grounds.
- July 25, 2018. 65th Anniversary Dinner and concert by pianist Father Robert Koopmann.
- September 27, 2018. Prairie Rhapsody Concert
Watch for further information on 65th anniversary events through emails, the Benedictine Bridge, our website and Facebook.
From the earliest black and white images to vibrant color photos of people and the prairie, the new photo exhibit Rooted in Faith, Transforming Lives—65 Years in Photos, at Holy Wisdom Monastery portrays the rich history of the Benedictine Women of Madison since their arrival on March 11, 1953.
“It’s been a challenge to narrow down the exhibit to only 40 pieces,” said Car McGinley, director of communications and IT and one of the staff working on the project. “So much has happened here in 65 years. We worked closely with the sisters to ensure the most important events are portrayed through the photos and captions. My personal favorites are the old black and white photos. Some are a little grainy but I think that will add a lot to the exhibit.”
2018 marks the 65th anniversary of the sisters being in Middleton. “Although we are always looking to the future, we felt it was important to honor the past with this exhibit,” said Janet Neurauter, director of mission advancement. “These photographs will bring back memories for some and be enlightening for others.”
The opening reception of the exhibit will be Tuesday, March 6, 2018 at 6:00 pm in the Gathering Area of the monastery building. At 6:45 pm, attendees will be invited into the Assembly Room to hear the personal stories of the sisters during a 45 minute presentation. Coffee, lemonade and cookies will be served.
The exhibit will be on display through April 30, 2018.