Catholic Diocese of Spokane, Washington



From the

Official News Magazine of the Diocese of Spokane

Eric Meisfjord, Editor
P.O. Box 1453, Spokane WA 99210
(509) 358-7340; FAX: (509) 358-7302


Three Cottonwood Benedictine Sisters celebrate 50 years of Religious life

the Inland Register

(From the August 20, 2015 edition of the Inland Register)

From left: Benedictine Sisters Barbara Ann Bielenberg, Elisa Martinez, and Margie Schmidt celebrated 50 years of Religious life this year. (IR photo courtesy of the Monastery of St. Gertrude)

On Saturday, July 25, the Benedictine Sisters of the Monastery of St. Gertrude in Cottonwood, Idaho, joined numerous family and friends in celebrating the golden jubilees of Benedictine Sisters Barbara Ann Bielenberg, Margie Schmidt, and Elisa Martinez. The three Sisters made their First Professions as women Religious 50 years ago, on Aug. 14, 1965.

Sister Mary Forman, monastery prioress, gave a welcome to the full chapel. Guest presider, Father Stan Bosch, ST, who works with Sister Elisa in Los Angeles, celebrated a bilingual Mass. Sister Betty Schumacher gave the reflection, honoring the spirit of the ministries of each Sister.

Sister Barbara Ann is the Director of Mission Integration at St. Mary’s Hospital and Clearwater Valley Hospital, where she is able to integrate her 42 years of nursing with coordinating spiritual care in a hospital setting.

Sister Margie Schmidt is the Director of Pastoral Care at St. Joseph’s Regional Medical Center in Lewiston, where she visits patients and families regularly, leads prayer services, visits hospice patients in their homes, co-chairs the ethics committee, coordinates local minister visits, and teaches community workshops on the dying process.

Sister Elisa Martinez is engaged with Soledad Enrichment Agency (SEA) in Los Angeles, whose mission is to provide high-risk youth and their families with alternatives to gangs, drugs and violence. Her transformational work with youth and the surrounding community has earned her the Heart of Gold Award and the St. Michael’s Parish Guardian Angel Award.


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