Mi casa es su. My house is your house.

Those were the words spoken by Fr. David Garcia of the Archdiocese of San Antonio to the gathered clergy, staff, and parishioners at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Warner Robins during the second "Enceuntro" or “Encounter” of the Diocese of Savannah, January 29th. A simple phrase given new meaning: not referring to our physical homes, but to our spiritual homes in the Church. During this recent two day gathering, more than 250 people from over 40 different parishes came together to evaluate previous and continuing efforts in the diocese to reach and serve our Hispanic Community.

Bishop Gregory Hartmayer's 2015 Christmas Message

“There was no room for them in the place where travelers lodged.”  - Lk. 2:7

Would the innkeeper have opened his door if he knew that Mary was about to give birth to the Son of God; to the Savior of the World; to the awaited Messiah?

Do you think the door to the Inn was the real door that Luke was referring to or does the door represent something else or someplace else?

Sarah E. Dixon, Assistant Editor, bids adieu to Southern Cross

It’s amazing how fast time goes by without us even noticing. The past two years of working as the assistant editor for the Southern Cross have come and gone so quickly. It’s easy to get wrapped up in the day-to-day routine and not realize the great amount of tasks that have been accomplished, opportunities taken, and growth acquired through each experience.

After joining the Southern Cross in December 2013, I immediately experienced a sense of pride in what I was going to be doing because it was all for the glory of God.

Opening the Door of Mercy

Bishop Hartmayer will officially open the Door of Mercy for the Holy Year at the Cathedral of St. John the Baptist
at the 10:00 a.m. Mass on Sunday, December 13

“Jesus Christ is the face of the Father’s mercy.” With these words Pope Francis began his announcement to the universal Church that he was declaring an Extraordinary Jubilee of Mercy, a Holy Year, to begin on December 8, 2015, the Feast of the Immaculate Conception of Mary. 

A salute to influential Black Catholics in the Diocese of Savannah: Erselyn Simmons & Lueretha Tillman

The month of November is designated as Black Catholic History Month within the Catholic Church. Established in 1990 by the National Black Catholic Clergy Caucus, the month is intended to recognize and celebrate the lives and contributions of Black Catholics within the Church.

Consecrated Life Profile: Sister Gilmary O’Hayer, RSM, Retired, Savannah

Sister Gilmary O’Hayer is a retired Sister of Mercy who was born and raised in Savannah. Her Irish family is filled with Savannah natives and she is the youngest of four children, with two older brothers and one older sister.

She attended the Cathedral School and then St. Vincent’s Academy where she was taught by Sisters of Mercy. Although she dated in high school, she knew that she wanted to be a Sister of Mercy, stating that they were always smiling and happy.

Consecrated Life Profile: Sister Jogues Smith, RSM, St. Vincent’s Academy, Savannah

Born in Brunswick, Sister Jogues Smith moved to Savannah when she was six months old. She grew up a cradle Catholic alongside her three brothers and one sister.

Sister Smith was a member of Blessed Sacrament Church from the time she arrived in Savannah and also attended Blessed Sacrament School from first grade on. She attended high school at Saint Vincent’s Academy.

Consecrated Life Profile: Sister Patricia Kennedy, RSM, St. Joseph’s/Candler, Savannah

Sister Patricia Kennedy was born in 1953 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and grew up in the suburbs. She was taught by the Sisters of Mercy at St. Denis Parish in Havertown, PA and later worked with them for two summers as a camp counselor for underprivileged children.

She said those two summers, at age 15 and 16, allowed her to get to know the Sisters of Mercy and were more or less what drew her to their community.

Although she felt that she was being called to become a Sister of Mercy, she took her time in making the decision to do so.

Consecrated Life Profile: Sister Lourdes Sheehan, RSM, St. Joseph’s/Candler, Savannah

Born and raised in Savannah, Sister Lourdes Sheehan, RSM, attended Catholic schools all her life.

First, she attended Blessed Sacrament Catholic School and then Saint Vincent’s Academy where she was taught by Sisters of Mercy. By the time she was a junior in high school, she’d decided that God was calling her to the religious life.

After graduation, Sister Sheehan moved to Washington, D.C. to attend Dunbarton College of the Holy Cross, which was an all female school. After completing one year, she entered the novitiate to become a Sister of Mercy.

Consecrated Life Profile: Sister Margaret Beatty, RSM, St. Joseph’s/Candler, Savannah

Sister Margaret Beatty, RSM, was born and raised in the countryside of Baltimore, Maryland. Throughout her life, she attended Catholic schools, but she never knew a single Sister of Mercy.

Sister Beatty and her best friend at the time regularly discussed the possibility of joining a religious community. Her friend’s brother who was a seminarian suggested that they give the Sisters of Mercy a shot, insisting that they were very friendly.


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Southern Cross
Catholic Pastoral Center
2170 East Victory Drive
Savannah, GA 31404
Phone: 912-201-4054
888-295-7144 Toll-Free (in GA)
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