by Soli Salgado
Global Sisters Report
Decades in nonviolence and anti-racism work has prepared Sr. Patricia Chappell for this tense moment in United States history, as her lifelong passions have become part of mainstream conversation in the country.
Chappell, a Sister of Notre Dame de Namur, was the executive director of Pax Christi USA for eight years and president of the National Black Sisters’ Conference for five years. Now the co-coordinator of her community’s anti-racism team, she has long been involved in anti-racism work, helping religious communities confront the systemic racism within their congregations.
And right now, she’s especially hopeful that communities of women religious can move toward “being in right relationship with those who think and look differently than the majority of us,” she said.
As she’s attempted to right the injustices she saw around her, Chappell said she never thought the Leadership Conference of Women Religious noticed her ministries until they called to tell her she would be the recipient of this year’s Outstanding Leadership Award, though the award ceremony has been postponed until next year because this year’s assembly will be virtual.
Though the honor came as a surprise to Chappell, her friends who spoke with Global Sisters Report said her tenacity, open-mindedness and dogged pursuit of justice make her a natural and effective leader…