Updated: 7-13-2020
Dear Friends, Family Members, Employees, Alumnae, Oblates, and Volunteers of St. Scholastica Monastery:

We are happy to report that the Sisters of St. Scholastica Monastery are all COVID free following our recent testing and strict quarantine.

It has been four months since St. Scholastica began to shelter in place to avoid the spread of COVID-19 in the community, and we are grateful that no sisters have been infected.

With this happy news, we will continue our practice safety and take continued precautions to prevent the virus's spread. On July 13th, we will conclude our strict quarantine.

Every sister and all of our on-site employees have been tested. If anyone has been in contact with the community and holds concern, we encourage you to please get tested.

We thank you for your prayers for our employees and us during this challenging time!

Additionally, the Monastery Gift Shop will be closed for two weeks as we usually do for summer break and will be closed from July 14-28, 2020. If you need something we can assist you with that need starting July 29, 2020.

The monastery will continue to be CLOSED to the public for the foreseeable future, including Hesychia House of Prayer, in New Blaine.

Thank you very much for your prayers and support of us here at St. Scholastica Monastery.

COVID-19 Update: The Monastery will remain closed through July 18th.

Sister Ethel Marie Sonnier, OSB

In lieu of flowers, please make memorials to St. Scholastica Monastery Continuing Care Fund, 1315 S. Albert Pike Ave., Fort Smith, AR 72903.

Sister Ethel Marie Sonnier, age 85, died June 14, 2020, at Chapel Ridge Health & Rehab in Fort Smith, Arkansas.

The family of John L. Sonnier and Isabelle Thibodeaux Sonnier welcomed their daughter, Ethel Marie, into their family January 13, 1935, in Church Point, Louisiana. Sister Ethel Marie entered Immaculate Conception Convent in New Orleans, Louisiana on February 2, 1950. On June 17, 1973, she transferred her vows to St. Scholastica Monastery in Fort Smith, Arkansas. Sister Ethel Marie taught at St. Anne’s High School for one year she served as Religion Teacher at St. Gabriel Parish in Kansas City, Missouri and at Maria Immaculata School in Houma, Louisiana. For nineteen years, she served on the core team at Hesychia House of Prayer in New Blaine, Arkansas. In 2014 she moved to the monastery infirmary and later to Chapel Ridge Health and Rehab in Fort Smith, Arkansas.

Sister Ethel Marie’s gentle and quiet, gentle presence and deep spirituality endeared her to many. She loved playing the guitar and composed many spiritual songs. She became involved in clowning ministry and loved to dress up as ‘Tot’ and perform simple mime programs at the monastery and in area nursing homes. She had a deep love for her French Acadian heritage.

Sister Ethel Marie is survived by her sister, Clara Darbonne, and many beloved cousins, nieces and nephews. She is preceded in death by her parents, her brothers Allen Joseph Sonnier, Wilber Joseph Sonnier; and sisters Rosa Mae S. Williams, Marie Louise Sonnier, Mary Leora S. Oak-ley, Mattie D. Sonnier, and Betty Ann S. Sparks.

The Mass for Christian Burial for Sister Ethel Marie will be a private cer-emony due to Covid-19. Please remember Sister Ethel Marie in your prayers.

In The News
October 18, 2018

St. Scholastica’s new monastery dedicated

St. Scholastica Monastery in Fort Smith celebrated the addition of a new facility on Sunday.

In The News
September 20, 2018

Out with the old, in with the new! St. Scholastica Monastery wins a brand new copier from Preferred Office Technologies!

Many Thanks To You!

We would like to thank you for checking in on us and keeping us in your thoughts and prayers. We are grateful and we will continue praying for the needs of the world.

Weekly Reflection - July 12, 2020

Woodpecker Power
Sister Bede Eckart

Once upon a time
in the long, long ago
the earth was green
and sparse and blue
splotches of purple and orange
variegated and pied.
A creature, chic
in red and black and fashion hat
and yellow beak
punctuated the scene
looking for food.
Ah, ha, a tree, hollow, a tiny hole
ummmmyum yum umm
of larvae and segmented worms
she had her fill
not to satiety.
What now! The hole, the hole is gone.
She dashed and smashed
from side to side and up and down
Cogitating she sat down
surveying her situation
my legs, my eyes, my toes.
ah ha! My head
my beak, my beak
peck, peck peck peck peck peck peck peck peck peck, peck, peck, peck, peck
Planning, persistence and hammering away won the day
for Peck-her-wood.

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