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LEFT: Srs. Margaret Ormond, Gene Poore, Joan Scanlon, Therese Leckert, and Gemma Doll

Dominican Sisters of Peace New Leadership Begins Term

COLUMBUS, OH - On the feast of St. Dominic, August 8, 2009 five women were installed as the first leaders of the Dominican Sisters of Peace, a new congregation founded on Easter Sunday this year.  The new congregation was birthed from the union of seven former congregations of Dominican Sisters:
- Congregation of St. Rose of Lima (Oxford, Michigan)
- Eucharistic Missionaries of St. Dominic (New Orleans, Louisiana)
- Dominican Sisters, Congregation of St. Mary (New Orleans, Louisiana)
- Dominican Sisters, St. Mary of the Springs (Columbus, Ohio)
- Dominican Sisters of Great Bend, Kansas
- Dominicans of St. Catharine of Siena (St. Catharine, Kentucky)
- Sisters of St. Dominic of the Immaculate Heart of Mary (Akron, Ohio)

The new Leadership Team members are Sr. Margaret Ormond, OP, Prioress (formerly of the Columbus congregation) and Councilors Srs. Joan Scanlon (Kentucky), Gene Poore (Oxford), Therese Leckert (New Orleans St. Mary), and Gemma Doll (Great Bend).  These Sisters had all served as prioresses of their former congregations at one time. 

While Sr. Margaret was formerly of the Columbus congregation, she is well known throughout the Dominican Order, having served as the first International Coordinator of Dominican Sisters International (1997-2007) and having spoken throughout the world on such topics as religious life in this century and the global realities the Church faces.  Most recently, Margaret ministered as a consultant on Leadership among African Religious, which brought her to many areas of the continent, including Kenya, Malawi, South Africa, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, and Zimbabwe.  Over a ten-year period, she also facilitated Dominican Congresses in the Philippines, El Salvador, South Africa, Kenya, Peru, and Hungary.  She, her council members, and all the Dominican Sisters of Peace bring a wealth of gifts to the new congregation and to the larger Church. 

In reflecting on the new congregation, Sr. Margaret said, "Our world is hungry for the Gospel and we, as Dominicans, are charged in a special way to witness to this Gospel with joy, wisdom, and example.  Adapting this mission to today's globalized world, especially with its recent economic challenges, will require sacrifice, study, prayer, and team work -- but we know that, once again, our always faithful God will inspire and sustain us as we move forward to meet the needs we encounter."

While the installation ceremony was held in Columbus, Ohio, many of the congregation’s Sisters and Associates participated in the event via live webcast.  There were several formal sites where they gathered to witness the event onscreen and celebrate with one another.  Others were able to watch from personal computers from their homes or offices.  Sisters and Associates from as far away as South America and New Zealand participated in the event via webcast.

A pontifical institute, the Dominican Sisters of Peace includes more than 650 Sisters serving in 29 states and in Honduras, Nigeria, Peru, Tanzania, and Vietnam.  The congregation also has more than 500 Associates. Central administration offices for the congregation are located in Columbus, Ohio, with various other offices located in St. Catharine, Kentucky; Akron, Ohio; and Oxford, Michigan.