Sister Fran Wilhelm, OSU: “The night I entered, I knew I was where I belonged.”

Sister Fran works a great deal outside Centro Latino with Patti Murphy, director of the Office for Hispanic Ministry for the Diocese of Owensboro, and Chris Gutierrez, director of Hispanic Ministry for Daviess County.

“Chris is so enthusiastic,” says Sister Fran. “He’s a ball of fire, full of energy. It’s wonderful to walk along with him and help him accomplish what he’s trying to do.”

Sister Fran calls Patti Murphy “talented in so many ways.” Murphy is director of Spanish Ministry for the Diocese of Owensboro and works with Sister Fran on a regular basis.

She has similar praise for Murphy. “Patti is such a bundle of a gift from God,” she says. “She’s just so talented in so many ways…so very dedicated.”

What kind of challenges does Sister Fran feel Centro Latino faces in the coming years?

She says, “A continued growth and acceptance. I know that Hispanic people are accepted more than they were when they first came, but this whole illegal tag is hard for people to accept.

“The bishop of Tucson recently said that if that law was just to begin with, sure we should fight it, demand that they obey that law. But he said they need us and we need them, so that makes that law unjust.”

She continues, “I refuse to give up hope. Every night Sister Rosemary and I beg the Lord to pour his spirit every time the Congress is talking about immigration. We beg him to touch their hearts so that they’ll learn to accept immigrants and pass a just law. We just refuse to give up hope.”