Sister Sissy Corr wrote the following on the occasion of her Jubilee in 2019:
I was born into a large and loving family and extravagantly blessed by their love. Through Notre Dame God called me and gave me many opportunities to grow my heart as wide as the world…the family of God. From my early experiences in teaching and social work I have continually grown in the belief that all of life is about helping each other to realize and celebrate our God-given potential.
I was inspired as a young Sister in Atlanta by Martin Luther King Jr. and the civil rights movement. His gospel call to act justly, walk humbly and love tenderly as brothers and sisters in Christ helped me to see that we are all one family in God. This understanding was nurtured in prayer and by reflecting on the writing of St. Julie and Thomas Merton. Through work with Catholic Charities and discernment with Sisters of Notre Dame, the Spirit led me to embrace the social concerns of the Church. I received training in sociology and community organizing. This training would shape the rest of my life as I learned how to bring people together to work together for the common good, the family of God.
As a result of this new understanding, from 1981-1991 I founded and coordinated the efforts of Jobs with Peace, a non-profit organization in Baltimore. In 1994, I became the Executive Director of Notre Dame Mission Volunteers. For the next 22 years with the SNDdeN and our colleagues we built a communal network across the country to empower the poor through education. In partnership with AmeriCorps we were able to grow our full time volunteer corps to 400+ members. As we serve in the Spirit of Jesus we learn from our brothers and sisters while assisting them to develop their gifts.
Ready to retire, I received a new call from God! Notre Dame Mission Volunteers invited me to go to Haiti and join Sister Jeanette and work with our sisters and brothers there. The people wanted jobs and they had a plan. A bakery plan. So we built a bakery the miracles continued. Today the Notre Dame bakery employs 45 “sisters and brothers.” Together we produce and sell many bags of bread. Thank you to all the Sisters, friends, and families who have supported us. This helps many families in Haiti.
My heart sings Jubilee.
St. Francis Xavier School, Teacher, First Grade, Washington, DC
St. Thomas More School, Teacher, First Grade, Decatur, Ga.
Catholic Charities, Brooklyn, Ny.
Catholic Charities, Baltimore, Md.
Service to the Sisters
Maryland Province Formation
Maryland Province Novice Director
Julie Community Center Center Organizer, Baltimore, Md.
SNDdeN, Chesapeake Province Team Member
Jobs with Peace Coordinator, Baltimore, Md.
Notre Dame Mission Volunteers Leadership
Notre Dame Mission Volunteers/Americorps Director, Baltimore, Md.
Notre Dame Mission Volunteers Haiti Bakery Project, Les Cayes, Haiti