Ministry of the Felician Franciscan Sisters
The Felician community had its historic beginnings in 1825 as Poland struggled under oppression of foreign rule. At this time of social unrest, a child, Sophia Truszkowska, was born to Joseph and Josephine who together raised a loving Christian family aware of the social and religious needs of their day. Injustice and appalling conditions in Poland influenced Sophia’s heart to help the oppressed, poor, and needy. With the support of her loving parents and the assistance of the Capuchin Franciscan Friars she started a Franciscan Community of consecrated women religious in Warsaw, Poland in 1855. With the help of Father Honoratus Kozminski, OFM, Cap., her spiritual director, the first five Sisters dedicated themselves to service and Sophia became known as Mary Angela. Orphans, poor women, and the disabled soon gathered about the Sisters. They served the sick, the homeless in social service centers and set up field hospitals to tend to the wounded in battle during the years of the insurrection. Over the years the Sisters traveled throughout the world and the community has grown and thrived. Responding to the signs of the times they established ministries in Poland, the United States, Canada, Brazil, England, Mexico, Russia, Haiti and Kenya.
This dedication to the plight of the poor and infirmed fit into the mission of St. Ignatius Nursing & Rehab Center, and in 1986 the Archdiocese of Philadelphia transferred sponsorship of St. Ignatius to the Felician Sisters. The first sisters to arrive at St. Ignatius Nursing Home were Sister Mary Cherubim Lubin, Sister Mary Nora Cebula, Sister Mary Fabia Wojtach and Sister Mary Agatha Cebula, who was appointed Administrator. The legacy of Sister Mary Agatha lives on through Sister Veronica Marie Lucero, who is the current Director of Mission Integration. There is an active inter-religious community of consecrated women residing in the convent on the fifth floor of the home. Women religious on-site continue to ensure the commitment to quality care and Gospel values.
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