Office of Pastoral Ministries welcomes Sr. Sara Marie of Eternal Love, SCTJM
Sr. Sara Marie, SCTJM, daughter of Bernard and Diane Kowal, grew up in Rockford, Michigan. She is the oldest of three girls, and currently has 8 nieces and nephews, all of whom live west Michigan. She graduated from Rockford High School in 1998 and went on to attend the University of Michigan, where she played water polo for the University and graduated with a BS in Biology in 2002. Soon after graduation, she moved down to Miami, FL to begin teaching. During her time in Florida she also earned a Masters in Theological Studies from Ave Maria University (2009). She taught for 5 years at an all boys Catholic High School in Miami (Christopher Columbus HS), and during this time discovered that the Lord was calling her to a vocation to the religious life with the Servants of the Pierced Hearts of Jesus and Mary. On March 25, 2007, she entered this religious Institute as a postulant and began her period of formation. She professed her first vows on the feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe (December 12) in 2009 and took the religious name Sr. Sara Marie of Eternal Love. Immediately after her profession, she was sent to the Diocese of Peoria to serve as the assistant director of the St. John Paul II Catholic Newman Center on the campus of Illinois State University. She was there for 2 and half years, until the fall of 2012, when she was asked to serve as a theology teacher and campus minister at Peoria Notre Dame High School. In 2019, she made her perpetual vows and she was asked to be the principal of Peoria Notre Dame High School where she served until 2022. During this time, she earned her Masters of Education Administration from Duquesne University (2020). She began serving in the diocese of Rapid City in January of 2023 as the Director of Pastoral Ministries and Faith Formation.
The Servants of the Pierced Hearts of Jesus and Mary, founded by Mother Adela Galindo in 1990 in the Archdiocese of Miami, are called to be a living image and presence of the Heart, Person and Mission of Mary in the heart of the Church and in the world. We are to be ardent witnesses of the power and fecundity of love and the Splendor of the Magisterium and Treasures of the Church. Being a Marian charism, we are also called to reflect the all-embracing motherhood of Mary and be always ready and “totally available” to go “in haste” like Our Lady to bring Christ to all hearts and to build a home, a school, and a path of holiness and Christian maturity. We are at the service of the New Evangelization, and with a Marian missionary heart, we go out into the deep of all the areopagus of our times.