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Sisters now a Family Scholar House affiliate

Family Scholar House of South Central Indiana, which has been a growing ministry of the Ferdinand Benedictines since the fall of 2012, has moved into a significant new phase by becoming an official affiliate of Family Scholar House Louisville, the originators of the program in 1995.

Recently, the Sisters of St. Benedict hosted a meeting to update various area advocates of the program on its progress in helping single parents achieve a college education.

Sister Barbara Catherine Schmitz, outreach advocate, told the gathering that the Ferdinand Benedictines are “all about education and life-long learning, and our goal is to work with community resources even more to develop partnerships and advocates for single parent families.”

She was followed by Sister Barbara Lynn Schmitz, prioress, who said, “St. Benedict said, wherever the need is, to serve. The need could not be more apparent to the single parent families that we are serving through Family Scholar House. We have a mutual passion to reach those people in need, who could improve their lives by studying and learning the life skills they need to move forward. I can’t imagine what it would be like to be so young with no support. To be trying so hard and not be able to make it. So we want to work with you to reach the people in need. I think if you took the core values of Family Scholar House and the sisters’ core values, they would match. And they would match the core values of those here today. The sisters are excited about this, especially our younger members; this continues our mission. I think it will be a permanent part of our reaching out to help people of the area.”

Kristie Adams, vice president of programs and services for Family Scholar House Louisville, told the group, “The Sisters of St. Benedict are our third affiliate. For them to have 21 graduates (already through the program) is amazing. They did it with the leadership of Sister Barbara Catherine, having great volunteers and the community support around them.”

Sister Traci Stutz has also become an outreach advocate for the program, along with Sister Barbara Catherine.

Twenty people attended the meeting, including representatives from Vincennes University Jasper Center, Crisis Connection, Tri-Cap, Northeast Dubois School Corporation, Dubois County Tourism, and the city of Ferdinand.