The Sisters Haven Dedication & Blessing
Under gray skies and light rain, more than 100 community members and women religious gathered to dedicate The Sisters Haven on the morning of Thursday, Nov. 1. The light rain would not deter Eastern Washington’s 18 orders of nuns from attending the opening of their namesake building. So after offering a short prayer, Bishop Emeritus Skylstad and Sister Donna Markham, president of Catholic Charities USA, sprinkled holy water across the community center and grounds at The Sisters Haven, and 75 new units of affordable housing in Spokane were officially opened.
The ceremony, which took place on All Saints Day, celebrated the latest affordable housing complex built by Catholic Charities as part of its push to solve homelessness. It is named in honor of the legions of women religious who have dedicated vocations of care and prayer to the people of Eastern Washington. The festivities included Mass, breakfast, the dedication ceremony and tours of the facility.
Attendees began the day by celebrating Mass in the chapel at the former Convent of the Holy Names with Bishop Skylstad presiding. The opening hymn offered a symbolic invitation to the 75 families who now have their own homes. Its opening line, “come to the table of plenty,” joyfully affirmed that all Eastern Washington residents deserve to be served with dignity, and that the community is capable of meeting all their needs. After Mass, guests shared a time of fellowship over a light breakfast.
Vice President of Housing Jonathan Mallahan opened the dedication and blessing ceremony on notes of appreciation for the many hands that contributed to The Sisters Haven.
“I thank you all for being here today and thank our residents for helping create this place as a place of peace, joy and justice,” Mallahan said. These many partners include the Holy Names Sisters, who provided the land; the Inland Group, which developed the project; and the city of Spokane, which worked closely with Catholic Charities through the development process and will provide emergency services to our residents.