​News & Events



August 26, 2021
Sisters Continue to Support Haiti

A woman walking with a little girl
File Photo: An HM Sister walks with a Haitian girl in this photo from 2014.

Villa Maria, PA – In 1991, the Sisters of the Humility of Mary adopted a corporate witness statement on their commitment to help the people of Haiti as a response to the great need they encountered there.

The needs in Haiti are now greater than ever as Tropical Storm Grace dumped heavy rain on an area where a 7.2-magnitude earthquake killed at least 2,000 people on August 14.

The HM Sisters are committed to their ministry partners in Haiti and will continue to support them through these recent challenges. Because they have contacts in the country that they work with regularly, the sisters can help those with great need quickly through designating financial assistance to their ministries already on the ground in Haiti. According to a ministry partner, the greatest need right now is to get roofs on houses that were not destroyed so that people are not sleeping outside.

Sr. Judy Dohner, HM, who served in Haiti for 17 years and is now serving Haitian people living in Florida, continues to have direct contact with HM ministry partners in Haiti. She writes: “Gratefully, even with all the political turmoil, the Prime Minister is asking Non-Government Organizations (NGOs) not to flood into the country with people and resources. They learned from the chaos after the 2010 earthquake because NGOs had no direction. It is a good move to want to go and help, but it leaves well-meaning people feeling helpless.”

If you would like to help the people of Haiti challenged by these recent events, you can donate online via the HM website, www.humilityofmary.org/support-us or by sending your donation with the designation of “Haiti Ministry” to: Sisters of the Humility of Mary, PO Box 534, Villa Maria, PA 16155.

Sr. Judy will continue to provide updates as more information becomes available; follow the Sisters of the Humility of Mary on Facebook and Instagram to stay current on the developing situation.

“May our united prayers for the people of Haiti and all those supporting them be a source of strength and healing,” said Sr. Carol Anne Smith, HM, Pastoral Leader, in a recent communication to the HM Community.

May 7, 2020
HM Sisters Find Ways to Stay Connected

Villa Maria, PA — The Sisters of the Humility of Mary are finding new ways to stay connected to each other in these times of social distancing. On May 5, a group of 23 sisters from Cuyahoga, Mahoning, and Trumbull counties gathered at Villa Maria Community Center to put on a parade for the Villa resident sisters who have been in lockdown since March 12. The group’s goal was to let the Villa sisters, staff, and apartment residents know that they were thinking of them.

Fourteen cars were decorated with handmade signs, balloons, and chalk paint expressing well wishes and messages of love and encouragement. An impromptu rendition of “If You’re Happy and You Know It” was led by Sr. Laurel Smith when the parade stopped for a short time to allow the participants to get out of their cars but maintain a safe social distance.

“The idea emerged when Sisters Anne [Victory], Carolyn [Marshall], and I were talking to a sister from another community who shared that their sisters had done it for those at their motherhouse,” said Sr. Mary Pat Cook, who organized the surprise parade. “We have also seen many news stories of car parades for birthdays, graduations, and other celebrations and thought it would be a fun idea.”

Sr. Mary Pat said the planning for the parade started around 10 days ago. After contacting a few people at the Villa to see if the idea would be feasible, the date was set for May 5 and the word was spread to other sisters to see if they were able to participate.

The Villa sisters, staff, and apartment residents were all appreciative of the parade and enjoyed the surprise. Many said it meant a lot to them and made their day.

“I think the sisters who participated enjoyed it as much as the Villa sisters. It was good to see people in person,” said Sr. Mary Pat.

Woman holding a sign that says we love you

October 13, 2017
HM Housing Celebrates 30th Anniversary

Congratulations to Humility of Mary Housing on celebrating its 30th anniversary on October 5. Over 100 people gathered to celebrate both the milestone for this important ministry and Sr. Loretta Rafter, HM, who began it in 1987.

Sr. Loretta founded Humility of Mary Life Opportunity Services to meet the needs of homeless, single parent families in the Akron, Ohio, area. A year later, the ministry was expanded and renamed Humility of Mary Housing in order to better support other areas of housing need.

Sr. Loretta served as president and CEO of HMLOS during its first 16 years, from 1987 to 2003.

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August 16, 2017
Sister Responds to Call to Share Her Voice

An intriguing premise and a chance to share her experiences led Sr. Eilis McCulloh to join a global panel of sisters participating in a new monthly series from Global Sisters Report. Global Sisters Report is an independent news publication whose mission is to “report on and give voice to women religious around the world.”

The Life, which features short reflections around a specific topic from members of the panel, launched recently on the Global Sisters Report website.

Sr. Eilis had heard about the opportunity through Giving Voice, a peer led organization for younger women religious to which she belongs.

“I was intrigued by the description and the opportunity to join with other religious from around the world,” Sr. Eilis said. “I strongly believe that it is important for younger religious (who are members of Giving Voice) to share our own unique experiences of religious life with our communities and with the world at large.”

Click on either of the links below to learn more about this new series: the first link explains the purpose of the series and introduces the panelists, and the second link is where you can access all the stories in the series as they become available.



Sister Eilis McCulloh

May 30, 2017
New Leadership Team Elected.

The Sisters of the Humility of Mary elected new leadership during their recent Chapter of Elections. Sr. Toby Lardie was elected to serve a second four-year term as Pastoral Leader. Sisters Karen Bernhardt, Margaret Marszal, Carol Anne Smith, and Barbara Wincik were elected to serve as councilors. The new Leadership Team will be installed in August at the HM Community's annual Community Days and Missioning.

Leadership Team Group Picture

L to R: Sr. Barbara Wincik, Sr. Carol Anne Smith, Sr. Toby Lardie, Sr. Karen Bernhardt, Sr. Margaret Marszal

Be a Villa Volunteer


Looking for a way to make a difference and have fun while doing it? Consider the many volunteer opportunities that abound in service of the Sisters of the Humility of Mary on the picturesque Villa Maria Community Center campus in Villa Maria, Pa. Open to anyone 21 and older, areas in need of service include:

Special Events • The Farm • Villa Maria Education and Spirituality Center • Other Departments/Areas as needed

For more information, call 724-964-8920, ext. 3274.