An MSC Snapshot: Sr. Barbara Leonardo

The Missionary Sisters of the Sacred Heart of Jesus (MSCs) is an international congregation of women religious present on six continents and in seventeen countries.  The MSCs are women who are drawn by the Heart of Jesus to be bearers of Christ’s love in the world.  In the Snapshot you will meet one of these amazing women, Sr. Barbara Leondardo, MSC.  Sr. Barbara is well known at Cabrini College.   Sr. Barbara came to Cabrini in 1958 as a faculty member of the History Department.  She taught in that capacity for five years.  Beginning in 1963, Sr. Barbara became the Academic Dean at the college for several years before being called to serve in California, New York, and New Orleans.  In 1967, Sr. Barbara was called back to Cabrini to serve again as Academic Dean.  Upon  Mother Ursula’s retirement in 1967, Sr. Barbara became Acting President.  Sr. Barbara served as Acting President from 1967-1968 during which time she initiated the Office of Public Relations and brought in the first lay members of the Board of Trustees.  Sr. Barbara now resides in New York.

Sr. Barbara Leonardo, MSC

Current ministry: Retired/Volunteer: Spiritual Life Committee for Senior Srs., Enneagram Workshop upon request, Adviser for Cabrini Lay Missionaries, Province Formation Team

What attracted me to a life as a Missionary Sister:
Mother Cabrini’s Life and attraction to China as well as the sisters in St. Donato’s School as well as the sisters working in the orphanage on 65th St. – especially Sr. Camille and her handling of the “young ones”

Experience that convinced me that religious life was the right path for me:
A sense of call to serve God fully in His people.

Favorite prayer or scriptural quote: “I have loved you with an everlasting love.”

Favorite way to pray: In solitude – contemplative prayer.

Blessings and challenges of community life:  Shared values, Companionship on the journey of life with women of faith; Living with women of different cultural backgrounds and expectations.

What I love most about being an MSC: My sense of identity as a woman consecrated to the Heart of Jesus… bring His love to the world

Best loved ministry:
Parish Ministry with all of its different facets – from sacramental preparations to sharing faith and ministry with parishioners.

What I do for enjoyment – hobbies and interests: Swim, Movies, Reading

People might be surprised to know that I… love to spend time with family and friends doing silly things.

My advice for those who are in discernment:
Give yourself time and space to listen to your “gut” and all the tugs of God’s call.

Favorite resources that I would recommend for those in discernment: Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius – offered at all Jesuit Retreat Houses.

The Snapshot is one of a series created by the  Stella Maris Province Vocation Promotion Team. More information can be found at:

Submitted by:  A. Schwelm, Assistant Library Director.

This entry was posted in Together on the Journey: News from the Missionary Sisters. Bookmark the permalink.

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