By Emilie Ng
IMITATING St Joseph’s quiet yet faithful demeanor has been Sr Jenny Scari’s approach to ministering to God’s people as a Sister of St Joseph for the past 40 years.
“I just like to be like St Joseph, quietly working in the background,” Sr Scari said.
But over the past few weeks, Sr Jenny was brought out from behind the curtains to centre stage, as loved ones honoured her commitment to Christ in her religious vocation.
Staff and students at St Joseph’s Tobruk Memorial School, Beenleigh, where Sr Scari has spent many years firstly as principal from 1993 – 94, and now “recycled back” as pastoral worker, showered Sr Scari with gifts, thanksgiving, and plenty of surprises for over two weeks.
“It’s been a lengthy celebration, and more than I expected,” she said.
The school celebrated a thanksgiving Mass for Sr Scari on the Solemnity of St Joseph, March 19.
Beenleigh parish priest Missionary Congregation of the Blessed Sacrament Fr Joseph Kanatt celebrated the Mass.
Reflecting on her 40 years of ministry with the Sisters of St Joseph, Sr Scari said she wondered where all the years had gone.
“I think about all the people I’ve met along the way and I know I’ve ministered to them, but they have also ministered and given back to me, which is a wonderful privilege,’ she said.
While Scari is an Italian surname, the Josephite Sister is a true blue Aussie.
Sr Scari grew up in Kilcoy, an hour northwest of Brisbane, the fourth of five daughters whose Dad was a milkman and a farmer.
She said growing up, she was acutely aware of God calling her to religious life.
“I can remember when I was in year 5 actually writing about becoming a Sister,” she said.
“But then when I finished senior, year 12, I said no, I’m not going yet God,” she said.
“But anyway, in the end I got caught into God’s net and away I went.”
Sr Scari said she lived by famous words quoted by her order’s Foundress, St Mary of the Cross MacKillop, “God wants us by every means in our power to lead others to life”.
She said her highlight of the past 40 years was being back at St Joseph’s to minister to students, staff, and parishioners.