Sister Dianna Ortiz, OSU: The mission of TASSC is to abolish torture wherever it occurs

Sister Rose Marita O’Bryan, director of the Contemporary Woman Program at Brescia University says, “Sister Dianna is a light in the darkness of our world. She is a 21st-century face of our Ursuline founder, Saint Angela Merici. I carry her in my heart every day.”

Her co-worker at TASSC, Sister Alice, says, “There is no doubt that Dianna as an Ursuline, has been, and is inspired by their founder Angela Merici. Dianna often mentions Angela, as well as the Maple Mount community for the support that she receives from her sisters. She lives the spirit of the Ursulines every day. To me, Sister Dianna is an epitome of what we as religious need to be about in these times. I will be forever grateful to God that I have been privileged to know Dianna, to minister with her, and be inspired by her faith and the commitments she has made to create a more non-violent world.”

Sister Dianna visited with longtime friend Sister Alicia Coomes during a recent visit to Maple Mount.

Sister Mary Matthias says, “TASSC, founded by Sister Dianna, speaks for itself, of how much she has regained of her own strength in order to work for and give to others who have been tortured.”

What does the future hold for TASSC?

“Our goal is to close all of our office doors,” Sister Dianna admits. “When we’re able to do that, that will also convey to us that the problem, the plague of torture has been dealt with … but it’s not going to happen for a long time. So the future of TASSC will continue to exist until there’s a reason not to exist.”

What about Sister Dianna’s future?

“I hope that someday I will be able to go back to the classroom,” she says. “But I’m sure that my approach to teaching would be far different from that of my early days. I really believe that social justice would need to be incorporated into the curriculum. Something as basic as respecting each other, dealing with conflicts, violence on television, and violence in these video games and toy guns. Being aware of other people’s needs.”

Is Sister Dianna happy as she completes the tenth year in her TASSC ministry and dreams of a future return to the classroom?

“I’m happy to be alive today,” she says with very little hesitation. “But I don’t know what tomorrow will bring. Every day is a new day for me and every day I renew my commitment to life. But I do not know what tomorrow will bring.”