Vis Sisters Be The Change

"We -- the Sisters -- are engaged! We are committed."

by Sr. Suzanne Homeyer, VHM

“We’re engaged!!”  was the Facebook message from a friend of mine in Mexico. Announcing this to the world through the social media? Why not? Of course! Being engaged to someone or with something should be out there for all to see.

Commitment is nothing to be taken lightly…WE — the Sisters — are engaged. Yes, you read that correctly….We ARE engaged. We are committed…

We are engaged with many people and committed to sharing our Visitation/Salesian spirituality with others. We want to insure that the ministry and mission and our way of living the Visitation charism  continues here on the north side well into the future.  To this end we have been exploring, praying about, formulating and putting into place a five-faceted plan of engagement. There are several ways a person may become engaged with us in our presence and ministry.

Visitation Engagement Programs

cross-in-handsWe are willing to join hands with people who are searching for God’s will in their lives.  Following the Spirit is a series of evenings on discernment and sharing about how God calls and how we can listen to God’s direction. Young adult men and women, single or married can participate in this form of engagement with us.  Space is limited but future sessions have been planned  and interested people can see more info on our website for the series beginning in the fall…there is even a new gem added to this form of engagement!

Our first group of VIP’s (Visitation Internship Program) participants are winding down their time of service and we are currently recruiting young people who are interested in giving a year of service, either in the midst of studies or after college. Sharing prayer, meals and ministry at the monastery and in the northside community are a part of this engagement picture. Building intentional community and living together in a home near the Sisters is yet another important facet of this form of engagement. Young adults, men or women, age 21 — 35  may apply now for next fall. An application can be found on our website.

Our first applicant in our Monastic Immersion Experience spent some time with us this past week.  Women, who are interested in living our contemplative lifestyle at any point in their life may consider spending 6 months to a year living, praying and ministering with us while living in the monastery. Of course, sharing domestic life with the Sisters is involved!

The Visitation Companions are a group of men and women who are interested in studying our spirituality and making a commitment to live it in their own daily life — taking it to the marketplace and wherever they may be.  It is not necessary to live in north Minneapolis, but sharing prayer and ministry with the Sisters whenever possible  and meeting together to share experience and develop their own sense of community is a goal.  Current Companions act as mentors for people interested in this form of Visitation engagement.  Currently there are about 18 Companions…talk about an 18- carat gold band!

And as our identifier says “we are looking for more visionary women to be a prayerful presence in North Minneapolis”  as Vowed Members.

We are not writing our proposal to you in an airplane on a clear blue sky but  know that this sincere invitation is lovingly offered to you and others you may know with open hands….won’t you put yours in ours?


Christine · March 21, 2012 at 8:39 am

Yes! this is what am I looking for. This rings so true with my heart. But how can I participate as an older Canadian?

sr. suzanne homeyer · March 21, 2012 at 9:27 am

we don’t have a correspondence program piece in place for the Visitation Companions form of engagement…but i would suggest you could begin by reading Bond of Perfection by Wendy Wright. It is about the mutual relationship between jane de chantal and francis de sales that gave birth to our order…it is just full of ways that people can complement each others’ gifts for the benefit of those they share life with in their immediate surroundings….maybe after you read this you can continue to read the elisabeth stopp biography of jane and the koster one about francis….you will continue to grow in your knowledge of our spiituality by studying their lived lives…maybe you could start a study group and have a canadian version of companions…a community that is not vowed but vital, energetic andcommitted to bringing the salesian spirituality to the marketplace. i am aware of the difficulties of being in another country and far away from us but this might get you to a deeper place of commitment and living the spirit.
—sr. suzanne

Melissa Kiemde · March 22, 2012 at 10:35 am

Sr. Suzanne has outlined a whole host of resources to ground you in knowledge of Salesian Spirituality. (Wendy Wright’s work on Francis and Jane is truly AMAZING!) As a Visitation Companion, I would also encourage you to come and visit the sisters, too, in north Minneapolis — if the spirit moves you. Knowing about Salesian Spirituality as it is lived out within the northside community, and experiencing it first hand are different sorts of things. Come! And if you get a community of like-minded folks together in Canada, I promise to come visit YOU! 🙂

Live + Jesus!
Melissa Borgmann-Kiemde, Visitation Companion

Phil Soucheray · March 22, 2012 at 11:20 pm


Even though distant, i feel confident saying that it is possible to continue sharing a sense of this community and spirit now that this connection has been made through the Web. Know that there is someone listening at this end should this wind up being the only way to stayconnected.

Peace, Phil

christine · March 23, 2012 at 9:31 am

Thank you all for you comments and follow up.

I am part of an another online catholic community and I find it has a lot of good points but I am still looking for a local community I can be a part of where I share my faith on a more consistant and deeper level and also put my faith into action.

I am volunteering at the local physciatric hospital as well as one on the ministries that the Sisters of St Joseph are the lead of. This ministry is wrapping up at e end of the month until next winter.

I currently am only actively involved/volunteering 4 hours a week and it is not enough. I am still looking for employment so I can not spend all my time volunteering, but I still need the “more….” what ever that is.

I am so looking for the “more” in my life. What I am doing is not enough, but I know it is not all in the doing but also in the prayer which I am active in as well.

I know I am being called to a live of prayer and service, and I feel strongly that it is in community.

And I am an Associate of a local religious congregation, but we only meet once a month and are not involved in thier ministry. There are only three of them in Canada, and 2 of them are Portuguese and the other works in the mental health area and also with young mothers. So there is not a lot to get involved with.

As a group we are looking into what we can do about human trafficking, currently we are getting ourselves informed.

Thank you for listening

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