When Sister Rosemary Nakhumicha traveled to Youngstown from Uganda a few years back, it was a bigger trip than she’d ever dreamed of taking. This nun from the Little Sisters of St. Francis of Assisi order came to live with the Ursuline Sisters of Youngstown while studying at Youngstown State University.
“I came with the vision that my education was very special,” she remembers gratefully. “The Ursuline Sisters of Youngstown made this possible.”
Sister Rosemary, who earned a baccalaureate in business from YSU and a Master’s Degree from DePaul University, Chicago, says she was “enriched” by living with the Ursulines. “They were very affirming,” she comments, adding that the Sisters’ introductions to local business people and volunteers were valuable, too.
Sister Rosemary , Associate Peggy Eicher and Sister Norma on recently visited while on a business and mission-appeal tour in the United States. She emphasized how her experience with Ursuline Sisters of Youngstown and her education have and continue to positively influence her life and the people she serves as a hospital administrator.
For a few years, Sister Rosemary ran a large hospital in a major metropolitan area. Now she oversees one in a rural Ugandan community. The hospital — operated by her religious community — serves a poor population. She’s had to draw on her education and experiences here to devise new means of raising capital to run the facility.
And what she’s achieving, comments Ursuline Sister Elizabeth Anne Friedhoff, “is amazing!”
The hospital operates a farm with the vegetables grown feeding patients and being sold for capital, fish ponds that operate in the same manner, and a forestry operation that also allows the locals to garden around the younger trees.
“This global connection is…for our benefit. It helps us to move a mountain,” Sister Rosemary posits. “We can enrich each other, and the children [her ministry touches] are growing to have something to dream about.”
She calls her continuing relationship with the Ursuline Sisters special. “They still keep me as a life associate member, and I really appreciate that.”
Sister Norma Raupple, a member of the Sisters’ leadership team and director of outreach, says, “Rosemary’s surprise, four-day visit was enjoyed by many Sisters. We laughed about times we had shared in the past, and we dreamed with college students about doing an internship with her in Uganda in the future.”