Archive for Thursday, June 3, 2010

Summer festival to benefit Sisters, Servants of Mary

June 3, 2010

Bernadette Horvat can say from personal experience how it feels to have the help of the Sisters, Servants of Mary.

“You just wouldn’t believe how peaceful you feel,” said Horvat, whose mother had the help of the sisters after she suffered a stroke. “You just feel peace when the sisters are there.”

The Sisters, Servants of Mary is a worldwide organization of medically-trained catholic nuns who administer some health care, such as blood pressure and medicine checks, to those who are either extremely sick or terminally ill. At the family’s request, the nuns will also sit with sick family members all night long, praying and offering a much-needed sense of security, Horvat says.

“They just do whatever needs to be done for the person during the night,” Horvat said. “They provide you rest because you just know you don’t have to worry about your family members during the night.”

The Kansas City, Kan., chapter of the Sisters, Servants of Mary is one of 120 convents worldwide, but is distinctive in its own right for being known as the provincial house, or the home base of the head of the entire order of Sisters, Servants of Mary, Mother Carmela Sanz. The convent currently houses about 40 sisters, who are either trained as registered nurses or certified nursing assistants.

The sisters will play host to their annual Summer Festival from noon to 5 p.m. Sunday, June 6, at the convent, 800 N. 18th St., Kansas City, Kan. An annual event since the mid-60s, Horvat said, the festival is given to raise money for building maintenance at the convent, nursing training for the sisters, who attend either Kansas City Kansas Community College or Donnelly College, and other needed items.

Horvat is the president of Mary Health of the Sick Guild, an organization formed to raise money for the Sisters, Servants of Mary. She said each year the festival raises about $13-$14,000 for the sisters.

“It helps the sisters,” Horvat said. “Literally all the money goes back to the sisters.”

Admission to the festival is free, but food for purchase will include homemade tacos and tamales, Italian sausage, barbecue beef sandwiches, hot dogs, ice cream and various Spanish desserts. A raffle, with provitica bread as the prize, will also take place, and the event will include activities for youths, such as a mini train ride, ring toss, miniature golf and face painting.

“Come out and support the sisters, so they continue the good work they do in the Kansas City area,” Horvat said. “You just wouldn’t believe it.”

For more information on the Sisters, Servants of Mary, visit sistersservantsofmary.com or call (913) 371-3423.

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