Letters lead to friendships

Letters defined Saint Mary Euphrasia. In her lifetime, St. Mary Euphrasia corresponded with thousands of Sisters, bishops, and friends. We, her Good Shepherd Mission Partners, are lucky to have seven volumes of her letters compiled and translated into English by the Spirituality Centre at the Motherhouse in Angers.

Reading St. Mary Euphrasia’s letters provides a unique and personal insight into how she ran the various houses. They show us how she spoke to others. And they reflect her personal feelings and thoughts about the expansion of Good Shepherd across the globe.


In June 2018 a St. Mary Euphrasia Letters Reading Club formed on a Facebook group. I posted the first volume of Letters in a PDF document and encouraged participants to read 5-10 letters a week, and to post their thoughts as they read. 

I was the Group administrator from the Mid-North America Office of Mission Effectiveness. Cristella Villasenor, a teacher from Collier Youth Services, posted the readings and a response prompt every Monday. The first volume of letter reading ended in January. The group had 114 members worldwide. Members can still access the group and are welcome to post. 

The Good Shepherd community is vast and diverse. If St. Mary Euphrasia was able to maintain and grow hundreds of relationships by writing letters, we can do the same. With that in mind, from the Letters Reading Club comes a new project: Good Shepherd Pen Pals.

Letters and pen pals

We are pairing as pen pals those who want to correspond with another Good Shepherd in a different location. We want to encourage hand-written letters, notes and cards. Once the pen pal pairs are assigned, it is up to each person to follow through and get to know his or her new friend. We will not moderate the project.

Imagine making friends with another Good Shepherd who lives in another country and has the same passion for the mission as you!

There are currently 17 pairs of pen pals, and more are waiting to be matched. 

“Do you know what draws down God’s special protection which upholds our Institute  and gives it such strength? … in a word, it is the spirit of unity.” St. Mary Euphrasia

Lizzie Cody

Lizzie Cody

Lizzie Cody is the Coordinator of the Mission Effectiveness office for Sisters of the Good Shepherd Province of Mid-North America.