Sister Kathy Braun

Sister Kathy Braun

Sister Kathy Braun is a calm, humble, compassionate, practical, and serving woman who became a sister without much discernment. As she evolved in her 60 years as a School Sister of St. Francis, she has become a very prayerful and discerning person, always trying to fit her gifts, education, and experiences in volunteering with the needs of others.

During these 60 years, Kathy has mostly served the poor. She has ministered as a medical technologist, shelter worker, chaplain, clinic worker, housing counselor, justice advocate and educator, parent caregiver, and volunteer for the Catholic Worker. She said she has loved every one of these ministries. She appreciates having had the opportunity to work with some wonderful leaders, including Sisters Bernadette Halbur, Fran Hicks, Nancy Hansen, Charla Buening, Helen Malcheski, and Joan McCoy, as well as the present Provincial Leadership Team.

While serving in these capacities and always retooling to serve better, Sister Kathy has continued improving her Spanish, begun with Sister Engratia at Madonna High School in Aurora, Illinois. Kathy loves science and enjoyed her many years as a medical technologist. Sister Cyriaka, another teacher at Madonna, inspired her in this area.

As a youngster in Aurora, Kathy took lessons in tap, ballet, and acrobatic dance. Even today, she enjoys any activity that involves body movement. To rejuvenate herself, she loves nature, rides a bicycle, and does mind and body exercises.

It is obvious that one of the threads in the embroidery of Kathy’s life has been learning new things to serve more completely in her ministries. Presently, she is experiencing this in her new life as one of the Provincials, yet part of her heart is still in El Paso, Texas.

A poem by Christine Lore Webber from the book Mother Wisdom Speaks captures Sister Kathy’s contemplative spirit well:

Some of you I will hollow out.

I will make you a cave.

I will carve you so deep the stars will shine in your darkness.

You will be a bowl.

You will be the cup in the rock collecting rain….I will do this because the world needs the hollowness of you.

I will do this for the space that you will be.

I will do this because you must be large.

A passage.

People will find their way through you.

A bowl.

People will eat from you.

And their hunger will not weaken them to death. Light will flow in your hollowing.

You will be filled with light.

Your bones will shine.

The round open center of you will be radiant.

I will call you brilliant one.

I will call you daughter who is wide.

I will call you transformed.

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