Sister Jordan Rose, S.V., continued to relish the moment while being congratulated by family, friends and fellow religious sisters after being one of six Sisters of Life to profess their final vows at an Aug. 6 Mass celebrated by Cardinal Dolan at St. Patrick’s Cathedral.
“This day was beyond anything I could have imagined,” she told CNY. “God is so good and I’m just beyond grateful for His love and His mercy.
“I hope to follow the Lord wherever he leads within this charism of life and to just live in the love of Jesus and share that with all those I encounter.”
The Sisters of Life were founded by Cardinal John O’Connor in 1991 to protect human life.
Here are short biographies of the six sisters:
Sister Maria Cristina, S.V., 47, studied biological sciences at the University of Seville in Spain, where she graduated in 2002. Before entering the Sisters of Life, she worked as a logistics manager in Mojave Desert, Calif., on a solar project being constructed by a Spanish company. She volunteered at the federal prison in Victorville, Calif., and was active in the ecclesial movement Communion and Liberation. Since 2017, she has served in the Visitation Mission in Manhattan, which explores life-giving options and provides resources and practical support to women experiencing unexpected pregnancies or adverse prenatal diagnosis. She has also served in the Hope & Healing mission of accompaniment for women seeking healing after abortion. Sister Maria Cristina is the daughter of Victorio Duque Gimeno and Cristina de Seras Ledesma of Seville, Spain, and has two older brothers, Alvaro and Victorio.
Sister Pia Jude, S.V., 37, earned a juris doctorate from Rutgers School of Law in Camden, N.J., in 2008, and a bachelor’s degree in English and philosophy from St. Peter’s University in Jersey City, N.J., in 2005. Before entering the Sisters of Life, she worked as an associate in the litigation department of Fried Frank law firm in Manhattan. Sister Pia Jude has served in various missions of the community such as the archdiocesan Respect Life Office, college outreach in Denver, the Coworkers of Life Mission and, for the past year, at the motherhouse in Suffern assisting in special projects for the community. She is the daughter of Judy and Peter Furka of Secaucus, N.J. Her identical twin sister, Sister Luca Benedict, is also a Sister of Life. The twin sisters served their parish, Immaculate Conception in Secaucus, as youth ministers from 2002 to 2005.
Sister Cara Marie, S.V., 34, grew up on a farm in Durham, Ontario, Canada. She received a bachelor’s degree in classical languages from the University of Guelph in Ontario in 2010. Before entering the Sisters of Life, Sister Cara Marie worked at a library, tutored for a home-schooling family and played the harp. She will help to begin a new mission this fall at St. Anthony’s Convent in Catskill in the Diocese of Albany. Her past missions include Sacred Heart Convent in Manhattan where pregnant women live with the sisters, and Villa Maria Guadalupe, a Sisters of Life retreat house in Stamford, Conn. Sister Cara Marie is the daughter of Albertha and the late Francis Benninger of Durham, Ontario, Canada., and has a brother, Aaron, and a sister, Kait Grein.
Sister Elizabeth Grace, S.V., 33, earned a bachelor’s degree in chemistry in 2010 from Murray State University in Murray, Ky., and taught one year at Owensboro Catholic High School in Owensboro, Ky., before entering the Sisters of Life. Sister Elizabeth Grace will help begin a new mission this fall of accompaniment of pregnant women and university evangelization at St. Agnes Convent in Phoenix. She has served in the Hope & Healing Mission, Visitation Mission in Manhattan and at Villa Maria Guadalupe in Stamford, Conn. She is the daughter of Monica and Russell Rhodes of Whitesville, Ky., and is the third of nine children: Travis, Jarrod, Kateri Edwards, Molly, Katrina Laws, Ethan, Tommy and Samuel. Her sister, Molly, professed final vows with the Hijas del Amor Misericordioso (“Daughters of Merciful Love”) in Madrid, Spain, earlier this year.
Sister Magnificat Rose, S.V., 32, was baptized a Lutheran, and was received into the Catholic Church with her first Holy Communion in Faribault, Minn., in 2001 by her local priest, now Auxiliary Bishop Andrew Cozzens, who also presided at her first vows. Before college, Sister Magnificat Rose was a missionary with NET Ministries for two years. While attending college, she worked part time in the St. Paul and Minneapolis Archdiocesan Vocations Office. She graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Catholic studies from the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minn., in 2013. She will join in serving the mission in Phoenix this fall. She has served in the Visitation Mission in Philadelphia and in the Sisters of Life Vocations office. She is the daughter of Timothy Earl and Trena Cooper Wayland. Her younger siblings are Grant and Gabrielle.
Sister Jordan Rose, S.V., 33, was baptized at St. Mary’s in Cottonwood, Idaho, and received the sacraments of first Communion, reconciliation and confirmation at St. Edward’s Catholic Church in Twin Falls, Idaho. She graduated in 2011 with a bachelor’s degree in elementary education from Washington State University, Pullman, Wash., and taught in a Catholic school in the Diocese of Yakima in Washington before entering the Sisters of Life. Most recently, she has served the New York City Visitation Mission. She earlier assisted in the mission of postulant formation, evangelization and in the Sisters of Life mission in Toronto. Sister Jordan Rose is the eldest daughter of Charlene and Joseph Rehder. Her younger siblings are Gabbie, Madison, Nicole, Max and Jennifer, who is deceased.