Tuesday, November 19, 2002

Hey. Did the Nuns of America send out press releases to media in every area of the country about their good work or something?

Why the little bump in Good Nun stories today?

Anyway. This one's from Florida:

Four sisters ministering in Apopka

When Sisters Ann Kendrick and Cathy Gorman arrived in Apopka 31 years ago, most of the streets were unpaved, and streetlights adorned only major thoroughfares.

And the people the nuns had come to help -- hundreds of mostly black farmworkers -- lived west of the railroad tracks, jammed together in warehouselike barracks, and worked in the vegetable fields, citrus groves and ferneries for little money.

But what a difference three decades and four Roman Catholic nuns can make.

Sisters Ann and Cathy and fellow nuns Gail Grimes, 64, and Teresa McElwee, 73 -- all members of the Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur order -- have started a staggering array of social programs in Apopka, most of them now operated by the farmworkers they serve..

....Over the years, the dynamic foursome has established the West Orange Farmworker Health Clinic, today called the Community Health Centers; the Justice and Peace Office, which teaches farmworkers to read and write; and the Community Trust Federal Credit Union.

They also created the Farmworker Association of Florida, which organizes farmworkers in four cities to deal with the social and political issues; Families in Power, a counseling program for at-risk families; and the Apopka Family Learning Center.

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