“For to be Dominican means to say WE…To be Dominican means to be a Family…!” (Mary Nona McGreal, OP, Dominicans at Home in a Young Nation: 1786-1865, 4)
Team McGreal is a vibrant Dominican family! This article highlights our current volunteers. You can learn about the staff on our Facebook page – thanks to Jenny Begich! For the past eight years, Jenny volunteers at the McGreal Center during her lunch break! She manages our Facebook page and created the “Humans of the McGreal” post series. Jenny earned a Masters in Library Information Science, and serves as an operational specialist in Dominican University’s Enrollment Department. She is an expert in data management and a wizard at technology. Why does Jenny spend that precious lunch working in the McGreal Center? Her Facebook entry explains: “. . . it seems that as soon as you walk into the McGreal Center all of the cares and stresses of the world disappear. And of course the parties!”
Our longest serving volunteer, Duncan Mak marks his 10th anniversary at the Center. Duncan’s portfolio is quite impressive! He has worked on various collections such as the Lay Dominicans of the Central Province of St. Albert the Great and Las Casas: Dominicans in Ministry with Native Americans. He monitors the document room’s climate control daily. Duncan was everyone’s right hand assistant for the In Our Keeping Conferences. Duncan is an excellent proofreader, a skill that he generously shares! Duncan is a man of few words so he simply states that he enjoys working in the McGreal Center because it is “harmonious.” We all hope that Duncan is here for our twenty-fifth anniversary!
Three Dominican sisters arrive to the Center every Tuesday, Sisters Mary Kremer, Beth Meegan, and Jan Brynda, who drives from the Southside! Sisters Mary and Jan taught in the Dominican University’s School of Education. Sr. Beth served as an elementary school principal and was a Superintendent of Schools in various dioceses. These seasoned educators work on the annals of the Dominican Monastery of Union City, NJ. They have a deeper appreciation of the cloistered nuns who lived 100 years ago and have a better understanding of both the change and continuity in Dominican life. The sisters experience the McGreal Center as an invigorating place where a spirit of study prevails. They also bring a great spirit of fun and laughter to the Center!
Jana Galos, a native of Czechoslovakia, came to the U.S after the Soviet Union’s invasion of her country. She describes the Center as “sunshine.” She also enjoys working on Union City documents because it “opens a new world of knowledge, about U.S. Dominican life.” She appreciates the sacrifices the nuns made and laments the hard decision to close a monastery that existed for over 120 years.
Ruth Bulinski is a “Jill” of all trades. Ruth keeps the Center beautiful as she decorates the Center for every holiday and tends the plants! She also works on the Las Casas Collection. Ruth is inspired by the dedication of the sisters, laity and friars who refused to give up their work with the Native Americans. Ruth, a community builder, recruits volunteers and recently invited Anita Morgan to join our Team.
Anita Morgan spends her time preparing for the forthcoming book, Dominicans on Mission: Selected Essays. She finished a contact list consisting of the emails of the faculty and staff of Dominican institutions. Soon she will provide prospective readers with summaries of the unique stories that provide valuable lessons in the history of Dominican life and mission, and Dominicans’ work in Catholic education, social justice, care of the sick, and more. Anita “appreciates being assigned work that has academic value, with the goal of reaching an audience who will benefit from these essays.”
Our volunteers contribute so much to the vitality of the McGreal Center! Archivist Aaron Reisberg describes us as a loving family. Consider volunteering! Be a member of this extraordinary Dominican family! Read more on our Facebook!