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Sister Mary Jane Lubinski, OP, Blessed as Vicaress 

December 17, 2012, Adrian, Michigan – “May this new ministry excite your heart and kindle in your mind a great creativity…May this ministry challenge you toward new thresholds that will emerge as you begin to approach them, calling forth from you the full force and depth of your undiscovered gifts…. May this new ministry be worthy of all the energy of your heart and the light of your thought.”

These were some of the blessings wished on Sister Mary Jane Lubinski, OP, as she formally began her service as Vicaress of the Adrian Crossroads Mission Chapter. She will serve as Acting Chapter Prioress until the current Chapter Prioress, Sister Mary Ellen Youngblood, OP, recovers her health sufficiently to resume her ministry. At that point, Sister Mary Jane will continue as Vicaress, assisting Mary Ellen in whatever way is needed. 

Led by Sister Attracta Kelly, OP, Prioress of the Adrian Dominican Congregation, the brief but heart-felt ceremony took place on December 14, 2012, in the Rose Room of the Dominican Life Center on the Adrian Dominican Motherhouse campus. The service also included special prayers for Sister Mary Ellen, that she might find in herself “a courageous hospitality towards what is difficult, painful, and unknown” and learn to use the illness “to illuminate the new qualities that will emerge in [her].” Both Sister Attracta and Sister Mary Jane assured Sister Mary Ellen of continued prayer and support.

“I’m humbled and honored to be here,” Sister Mary Jane told the assembly. “My heart is open and ready, as well as my arms. It’s an awesome blessing. It is a great challenge.” She recalled walking in front of the Motherhouse when she was a novice and realizing that her roots lay in Adrian. “I have personally been rooted in Adrian, with an itinerancy that has moved internationally.”

Sister Mary Jane’s years in ministry have taken her from the classrooms to Appalachia; Atlanta, Georgia, to work with people affected by AIDS/HIV; to South Africa, where she served at the Catholic Institute for Education, where she headed a pastoral care program for people affected by AIDS and conducted workshops across the country; and to Swaziland, to work with teachers and improve the conditions of students. Sister Mary Jane came to Adrian from Detroit, where she was development director for Covenant Community Care, offering medical, dental and behavioral health care to all who need it.

In her new ministry, Sister Mary Jane will work with the more than 100 Sisters and Associates of Adrian Crossroads Mission Chapter, who live and minister in the Adrian area and as far away as Cleveland, Ohio. Adrian Crossroads is one of eight Mission Chapters of the Adrian Dominican Sisters, all under the leadership of a Chapter Prioress.