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Partners in Mission

Posted 9/29/2019

During October we pay tribute to two employees who minister alongside the Ursuline Sisters.

The Ursuline Sisters of Toledo and the Ursuline Center are blessed to have a host of dedicated employees who minister alongside us in our daily activities.

Sister Mary Jo Szpila, SND is serving in her fourth year as Coordinator of Pastoral Care and Liturgy. In this newly created position, Sister Mary Jo provides pastoral visits with residents and staff of the Ursuline Center and invites Priests to say Mass in our Chapel , among many other duties.

At the time when Sister Mary Jo began looking for a new position, she felt the call to do more pastoral care work and realized the Ursuline Center would be a positive fit. “I found the Catholic environment and collaboration between religious communities to be inviting. I saw only opportunities and gifts on the horizon.”

Sister Mary Jo says she enjoys the deepening friendships she has gained with residents, values the graciousness of the Priests who offer sacraments of Eucharist, anointing and reconciliation, and appreciates learning more about the charism of St. Angela Merici and St. Ursula. She adds that it is an honor and privilege to sit with residents as they approach the end of their earthly life and move toward eternal life.

Sister Mary Jo is a parishioner at Corpus Christi University Parish and volunteers there on occasion. She looks forward to celebrating her 50th Jubilee of religious life next summer.

Jennifer Dean-Jeffers began working as an STNA at the Ursuline Center 18 years ago, and after going to school while working, is now an RN. “When I first walked in to the Ursuline Center I felt it was meant to be. I remember smelling cookies! The Center is clean and has a nice, homey environment.”

Early on, the Sisters inspired and encouraged Jennifer to return to school to work toward an RN degree. “Many of the Sisters were educators. I was inspired by how hard they have worked and I wanted to give back to them in some way.”

Jennifer says she enjoys working one on one with the residents, getting to know them, and reminiscing with them about their past ministries. Offering comfort and care is important to her as well. Over the years Jennifer has experienced our growth as a result of the licensure process to welcoming in residents who are associates and Sisters from other communities.

Jennifer is a busy person. When she is not continuing her education, Jennifer enjoys spending time with her husband and two “fur babies,” Hank and Chewey.