Sister Arlid Barrera, 57, professed her final vows as a member of the Sisters of St. Joseph of the Third Order of St. Francis on March 17 at St. Joseph Chapel at Marymount Congregational Home in Garfield Heights, Ohio.
A native of Medellin, Columbia, Sr. Arlid immigrated to the U.S. at the age of 22 and became an American citizen. A former member of the Franciscan Sisters in Tiffin, Ohio, she became familiar with the SSJ-TOSF while attending the Common Franciscan Novitiate with Sr. Jo Ann Poplar and Sr. Lisa Alexander. She felt a common thread of bonding.
"They told me, 'You belong here,'" said Sr. Arlid, who became a SSJ-TOSF candidate in 2007 and professed her temporary vows in 2008.
She earned a bachelor's degree in psychology from the University of Wisconsin in Green Bay, holds a certificate in lay ministry from the diocese of Charlotte, North Carolina, and completed a pastoral studies program at South East Pastoral Institute in Florida. Sr. Arlid formerly worked in the Green Bay school district in special education and as a Spanish translator, and ministered in the diocese on weekends.
Currently, Sr. Arlid is employed as a substitute teacher in the Cleveland area and enjoys driving older sisters to appointments. She looks forward to working in a bilingual Bible school this summer and has helped children prepare for their first communion. Her hope is to find full-time ministry in human services within the diocese or school system, working with Spanish-speaking children and their families.
"My desire is to share what I know," she said. "We are here in this world to be blessed by each other."
The SSJ-TOSF is a Franciscan community of nearly 400 members (including 100 associates) with congregational homes in Ohio, Illinois and Wisconsin.
Read more about Sr. Arlid in the upcoming issue of Peace & All Good. Find more photos from ceremony by clicking here or visting our Facebook page.