Sister Marie Tolle with Associates, friends and Padre Juan Turuy

—Cecilia Harriendorf, SC

On December 10th, the Sisters of Charity in Novillero invited their new pastor, Father Juan Turuy, to lunch with the Associates from the Solola area. Four Associates and two long-time friends were happy to accept the invitation.

The luncheon was an opportunity for all to meet Father Juan on a personal level. The Associates used the occasion to introduce the new pastor to the various works of the Sisters of Charity in the region. They also shared their activities as teachers, youth ministers, and health care professionals, and spoke about the value of the Associate relationship. The former director of the Associate Program in Guatemala, Sister Anne Denise Brennan, was credited as the person who nurtured their enthusiasm for the charity charism. It was suggested that Padre Juan become the first priest Associate in Guatemala. He didn’t say no . . .

Gregorio Joj Cux, a health care professional in the Novillero Clinic, was the man of the hour when Sisters Marie Tolle and Ceil Harriendorf ran out of cooking gas during the preparation of the meal. Thanks to Gregorio’s resourcefulness, the tank was switched with another house and dinner was served on time. Long-time friend of the Congregation and eucharistic minister, Isabela Moralez Ordonez,  also joined the festivities. The final attendee was Fernando Angel, the five-year-old son of Associate Francesa Vasquez Lopez. It was suggested that Fernando become an associate. He didn’t say no either!

Sisters Marie and Ceil were delighted with the wonderful conversations that flowed at table and, of course, relieved that hot food remained on the menu.

The warmth, commitment, and love that Father Juan, our associates and dear friends express —in their lives and in their various activities— are wonderful examples of charity at work in the world. Lunch was our simple, but sincere way to say, “Thank you.”