Dominican Sisters launch first-ever podcast series

For the Life of The World Dominican Sisters Launch First-Ever Podcast Series on Congregation’s 148th Anniversary

The new Springfield Dominican Sisters’ podcast series, F.L.O.W.cast, is streaming now at https://flowcastlisten.podbean.com/. You can also visit https://flowcastlisten.org/ to subscribe and receive each new episode in your inbox every Thursday.

F.L.O.W.cast is meant to be welcoming to a younger audience that appreciates intergenerational conversation and an eclectic mix of inspiring stories about the sisters’ lives and ministry.

Each week, one-to-one conversations and roundtable discussions with Springfield Dominican Sisters, coworkers, and associates are meant to acquaint listeners with the lives and ministry of the sisters and share stories about how they are changing lives in hopeful ways.

“From the day our first sisters landed in Jacksonville, on August 19, 1873, they fostered relationships with those they served as an expression of their desire to bring the compassion of the Gospel to people on the margins of society,” said Sister Beth Murphy, series producer and the communications director for the sisters. “Launching F.L.O.W.cast today is a way of honoring their vision, courage, and commitment.”

The F.L.O.W.cast format was inspired by the relationships host Jeremiah Washington began building with the sisters when he began working at Sacred Heart Convent five years ago. “I didn’t know anything about the sisters when I started working at the convent,” he said. “I’ve enjoyed getting to know them and learning about their dedication to their ministry. They’ve inspired me a lot. I’m happy to be able to share that with the world.”

The inaugural episode is Sister Bernie has a Fan Club. Jeremiah chose to launch his podcasting career with Sister Bernadette Marie McGuire because he was aware of her reputation for humor at Rosary High School in Aurora where she was previously the librarian. “Sister Bernie has a quirky sense of humor. That helped me escape the nervousness I was feeling as we recorded that first episode,” he explained.

New episodes of F.L.O.W.cast are available every Thursday throughout the estimated 6-month podcast season.

Aaron Tebrinke, the project manager for the sisters, doubles as the podcast editor and sound engineer. He recognized the gifts Jeremiah could bring to the project. “I noticed the respect he has for the sisters, his curiosity about their lives of ministry, and his comfortable way of relating with others, and thought he could share those gifts with a broader audience of young people like himself,” Aaron said of Jeremiah, who is on loan to the F.L.O.W.cast team from the Sacred Heart Convent housekeeping department.

The podcast name, F.L.O.W.cast, is an acronym for the phrase For the Life of the World, which appears in John’s Gospel and is used by the sisters to summarize their response to God’s mission.

Completing the F.L.O.W.cast production team is Veronica Brown, the communications and advancement specialist for the Dominican Sisters, who designs the graphics and manages the distribution platforms.

Search for F.L.O.W.cast on your favorite podcast app starting August 19, or visit https://flowcastlisten.org/ and subscribe to receive the podcast in your inbox.
Listen to all the recordings in the podcast channel starting on the 148th anniversary of the Springfield Congregation (1873-2021) Thursday, August 19, 2021: https://flowcastlisten.podbean.com/

Catholic schools mask mandate effective Monday, Aug. 16

Dear Catholic School Community Members,

Since our last communication on July 25, a great deal has occurred concerning the COVID-19 pandemic. Our state has seen the highest number of cases in a single day since the start of the pandemic, and many of our hospitals and medical facilities have been pushed to capacity. When our guidance was issued at the end of July, we knew we were facing a spike in cases but had hoped it would pass quickly. Unfortunately, we see that is not our reality, and we have been forced to re-evaluate what we are doing to prevent the spread of COVID-19 to ensure our teachers, students, and families are safe. After consultation with healthcare professionals, principals, canonical administrators, and Bishop Kopacz and following the Mississippi Department of Health and CDC recommendations for schools, beginning Monday, August 16, all teachers and students in Catholic schools in the Diocese of Jackson will be required to wear masks.

This decision is not one our office takes lightly. Our number one priority is the health and safety of everyone entrusted to our care. In addition, we recognize that in-person learning is the best environment for our students. It is our responsibility to do everything we can to ensure these two things can happen simultaneously.

The decision to require masks has been made based on the data and research demonstrating that masks work to mitigate the spread of this virus. Throughout the pandemic, as mask mandates were implemented across the state, case numbers fell. Unfortunately, we now face higher case numbers than at any point during the last school year. In addition to higher case numbers, we are seeing an increase in infections in young children. As of August 11, there were six children in the pediatric intensive care unit at UMMC in Jackson with others across the state.

We feel it is counterintuitive to relax our mitigation strategies in the face of a stronger enemy in the delta variant. This mask mandate will be re-evaluated weekly until it is determined it is safe to relax our protocols.

We recognize and appreciate that families make sacrifices and pay tuition to send their children to our schools. While not everyone will agree with this decision, we hope you have enough trust in our office and your local school to understand we are working to serve our entire community.

We appreciate your continued support and prayers, and we will provide updates as needed moving forward.

Sincerely,

Karla Luke, Executive Director of School Operations
Stephanie Brown, Director of Curriculum & Development

Click here for PDF copy of this letter