Journey to final vows reveals how ‘it takes a diocese’

Sister Isaac Marie Breckler, OP, a Bishop Dwenger High School graduate who grew up in Noble County, will complete her perpetual profession with the Dominican Sister of Mary, Mother of the Eucharist, at Christ the King Church in Ann Arbor, Mich., this month. A high school science teacher, she looks forward to continuing to explore the intersection of faith and science with her students.

By William Schmitt

When Sister Isaac Marie Breckler, OP, a native of Avilla, makes her final vows in the Community of the Dominican Sisters of Mary, Mother of the Eucharist, at 10 a.m. July 25, her focus will be on future commitments. Those include daily eucharistic adoration and teaching high school science, in line with her order’s drive to serve the new evangelization and “to contemplate and give to others the fruits of our contemplation.”

Experiences of personal witness and prayer that she recalled in her family, in St. Mary of the Assumption Parish and its school in Avilla, at Bishop Dwenger High School and at the University of St. Francis combined to reveal a roadmap for discerning God’s call to a vocation in the religious life.

“I’m very grateful to the diocese,” Sister Isaac Marie said. “It’s a great place, because the faith is lived.”

She reflected on many steps that advanced her toward her 2009 entry into the growing Sisters of Mary in Ann Arbor, a religious order consecrated to Jesus through Mary, dedicated largely to Catholic K-12 education and credited with a national impact two decades after its founding.

Crucial steps were taken early as Sister Isaac Marie grew up on a small farm in Noble County, part of a family that prayed the rosary together every night. Her mother frequented daily Mass; her uncle, Father Glenn Kohrman, a longtime priest of the Diocese of Fort Wayne-South Bend, provided inspiration, and she attended St. Mary Catholic School.

“I realize now what a rare privilege it was to have religious sisters still at the school,” she said. Two members of the Franciscan Sisters of the Sacred Heart taught her in first grade and in middle school. “They were wonderful, joyful religious, so I had that witness throughout my formative years.”

Sister Theresa’s classes in middle school read biographies of saints, making the young student more interested in religious life and affirming that “holiness is attractive.”

Posted on July 12, 2017, to: