The mission of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Northwestern Pennsylvania, its agregees and associates, is to unite all people with one another and with God by responding to the ever-changing needs of the world and serving the neighbor without distinction. 

The foundation of our spirituality is always being open to the action of the Holy Spirit in our lives, unwilling to rest in the past, as we move always toward closer union with God.  ~Sisters of St. Joseph of Northwestern Pennsylvania Constitutions

Historically, spirituality was often equated with the so-called religious aspects of the Christian life such as prayer, penance and fasting. More recently, the meaning of spirituality has broadened. We each have unique images and thoughts about God and our relationship with God. Spirituality can be what we believe and imagine and how this influences the way we live, relate, pray and worship. Spirituality is our sense of connection to God.
Rosemary O’Brien, SSJ

Table of Plenty

A reflection by SSJ Agrégée​ Cindy Polesnak Imagine that you are the two disciples on the road to Emmaus, discussing the events of the past 3 days, Jesus’ last supper, crucifixion, and resurrection. The two disciples learn that Jesus was … Read More

It is Finished.

A reflection by Nancy Fischer, SSJ ​When Jesus had taken the wine, he said, “It is finished.” And bowing his head, he handed over the spirit. -John 19:30 I believe that two key words in this passage are “handed over.”  … Read More

Love Listens; Do You?

A reflection by Josette Marie Gocella, SSJ As I pondered what might be the message of this reflection to be shared with the congregation and the broader community, I glanced at the various “stick-ums” currently on the refrigerator in my … Read More

And then what?

Reflection and photo ​by SSJ Agrégée Charlene Kellerman As we know, the practice of giving up something is often a ritual for Lent.  It can serve as a symbol of self-sacrifice, a form of fasting, and represent the sacrifice for … Read More

God’s timing is often not my timing.

A reflection ​by Clare Marie Beichner, SSJ Life and seasons have their timing. Mums typically bloom in the fall. The mums I purchased in September bloomed beautifully until late October. However, the mums I bought in 2022 and planted in … Read More

Are You Listening?

A Reflection on Mk 9:2-10 ​by SSJ Associate Margaret Chrymko The Transfiguration (Mk 9:2-10), when Jesus led Peter, James, and John up a mountain and was transfigured before them, is one of my favorite Gospels. In the past, I’ve reflected … Read More

Are You All In?

A Lenten Reflection by SSJ Agregee Betsy Wiest In John’s gospel, the woman who anoints Jesus is Mary of Bethany. Let’s start by saying that Mary got it. She sat at Jesus’ feet. She listened and opened her heart to … Read More

Ash Wednesday: The beginning of the end that leads to the new beginning.

A Lenten Reflection by SSJ Associate Catherine Shimek Ash Wednesday is the day I begin to undertake the removal of some wall that I built between me and God. I examine my life and ask what thing or things have … Read More

Our Thirst is for More than Water

In yesterday’s readings, the dialogue begins. Firstly, it’s between Moses and his people who are thirsting for water on their journey – and then between Moses and God who responds so generously, providing the water. “If today you hear God’s … Read More

I’ve Been to the Mountain Top

On April 3, 1968, Martin Luther King, Jr. gave a speech in which he said, “I’ve been to the mountain top and seen the promised land.” Jesus led Peter, James and John up a high mountain to see the promised … Read More

Discovering LIFE ~in the Desert

Jesus, following his baptism by John, was driven by the Spirit, to spend time in the desert for forty days. There he wrestled with temptations and questions about who he was and how he was to live his deepest call in … Read More

Exploring Intersections: Catholic Sisters on Racism, Migration and Climate

A Reflection on Gender Equity by Sr. Rosemary O’Brien, SSJ This collaborative project of LCWR Region 10 involves a year-long monthly discussion. Each month focuses on a social issue and explores how it intersects with Racism, Migration, and Climate. Gender … Read More

InFORMATION: What we need is here.

by Rosemary O’Brien, SSJ “Geese appear high over us, pass, and the sky closes. Abandon, as in love or sleep, holds them to their way, Clear in the ancient faith:  what we need is here.”           … Read More

Living a Responsible Lent – Be Protectors of God’s Handiwork

Living a Responsible Lent – Caring for Our Common Home – Week 1 “Living our vocation to be protectors of God’s handiwork is essential to a life of virtue; it is not an optional or secondary aspect of our Christian experience.”  Pope … Read More

what scent do you leave behind?

I have been thinking a lot about the anointing of Jesus as St. John describes it in his gospel.  In John’s gospel, the woman who anoints Jesus is Mary of Bethany, Lazarus and Martha’s sister.  Let’s start by saying that … Read More

fourth week of lent

While I am in the world, am the light of the world. John 9:5 I have heard of this man, Jesus, the son of the carpenter Joseph and his wife Mary.  Some say that he is the anointed one of God.  … Read More

never be thirsty again

third week of lent The noon-day sun shines brightly in Sychar warming the dusty ground on which I sit.  I stretch and yawn as a woman approaches the well of Jacob with her bucket in hand ready to draw water.  … Read More

take up your cross

second week of lent We adore Thee O Christ and we bless Thee, for by Thy holy Cross you have redeemed the world. In 355 A.D. the emperor Constantine erected the Church of the Holy Sepulcher at the site where … Read More

lead us not into temptation

first week of lent Jesus was led by the spirit into the desert to be tempted by the devil.                                     Romans 4:1     Jesus was in the desert for forty days and forty nights and during that time the devil tempted him.  I … Read More

Ash Wednesday: the beginning of lent

You are dust and to dust you shall return.  Repent and believe in the gospel.   With these words ashes are imposed on the foreheads of the faithful at mass on Ash Wednesday, the beginning of Lent.  Lent, from the … Read More


There is no one way to pray; there are as many ways as there are pray-ers. Teresa of Avila says, “Prayer is nothing but friendly intercourse, and frequent solitary converse, with Him Who we know loves us.” Prayer is my … Read More

Enhancing Life with Spiritual Growth

Spirituality is key to becoming a whole and complete person. It is the catalyst for a relationship with God, with others and with our world. Henri Nouwen, a Jesuit Priest, captured it well: To pray does not mean to think … Read More