Sunday, 24 June 2018 20:47

Maryknoll Affiliates in Hawaii

Written by Roseyn Devin and Mary Ryan-Hotchkiss
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Roseyn Devlin – Hawaii Chapter and Mary Ryan-Hotchkiss – Portland Chapter

Several Hawaiian Affiliates and their visitors at the December gathering: back row l. to r., Sr. Earnest Chung MM, Ginny Klein, Mary Ryan-Hotchkiss and Manny Hotchkiss, visitors from the Portland Affiliate Chapter, front row, Sr. Rosalinda Barrozo MM, and Roseyn Devlin.

Six long-time residents of Hawaii with deep Maryknoll connections shared their stories over lunch at the home of Roseyn Devlin in Kailua, Hawaii, on the island of Oahu. This Affiliate chapter began more than 10 years ago after Jack Sullivan recognized their Maryknoll connections, and that they were already meeting, and suggested they form a chapter. Several of the members knew some of the Maryknoll Sisters and the 25-year Affiliates honored at the recent Conference in Guatemala. Roseyn has also attended a couple of Maryknoll Affiliate Conferences in New York and while there visited some Maryknoll Sisters she knew.

The Maryknoll School in Honolulu was a connection for several Affiliates. Roseyn worked 22 years as the librarian, and Patti Shannon also served there. Ginny Klein’s four children attended the coed school.

Betsy Connors served in Taiwan as a Maryknoll Sister nurse for several years before she left the order and later married Larry. Larry, now deceased, became a chiropractor in Hawaii and was part of the Maryknoll Affiliate Oahu chapter since its beginning. This October, Betsy and Roseyn attended and were inspired by the Maryknoll Sisters’ gathering in Hawaii for sisters serving in East Asia and the Pacific.

Patti Shannon’s uncle was a Maryknoll priest in Japan. She was happy to share tales from her husband’s and her many short-term missions with Maryknollers in Thailand, Tanzania, Peru, Samoa, and China.

Two of the women, Maryknoll Sisters, had worked in mission in Hawaii for more than 40 years each.
Sr. Earnest Chung said the Maryknoll Sisters have been in Hawaii for 90 years and served in various ways. They helped found Hawaiian Catholic Charities, schools, and orphanages, did family counseling, worked on adoptions, and assisted immigrants and the aged. Sr. Earnest, originally from Hong Kong, worked many years in various positions in Catholic Charities. Many Maryknoll Sisters were bilingual and had an Asian heritage, so they were especially valuable working with Asian immigrants in Hawaii. At one time there were 165 Maryknoll Sisters in Hawaii.

Sr. Rosalinda Barrozo, originally from the Philippines, said she ministered to the Filipino field workers and their families in Hawaii. Even in her retirement, she continued to use her training in agriculture as she helped the aged learn to grow vegetables in small containers in their homes. During World War II, she was interned in a Japanese prison camp in the Philippines. Later she learned that Maryknoll sisters had also been interned at the same camp.

These Affiliates have formed a community that supports all their efforts for peace and justice. They sometimes work together helping women who are in prison or are transitioning out of prison. Lucille Mistysyn (not present), now in her nineties, frequently volunteers at the Maryknoll School. Ginny leads a support group for people dealing with obsessive compulsive disorders. 

The Hawaiian Affiliates would like their chapter to be considered part of a western region—either California, since some have family in California, or the Northwest. The Hawaiian Affiliates would like their chapter to be considered part of a western region—either California, since some have family in California, or the Northwest.


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