Out of seven women from seven different districts, Sr. Sandra Makowski of the Sisters of St. Mary of Namur has been chosen as the 2015 South Carolina Council of Catholic Women Woman Religious Award recipient.

The Woman Religious Award was established by the SCCCW in 1995 and is presented annually to a Sister who has made a significant contribution to the Roman Catholic Church in South Carolina.

SCCCW is an organization of affiliates and deaneries that serve their Church in the geographic boundaries of the Diocese of Charleston. Founded in 1930, SCCCW serves the Church and the people of S.C.

Sr.SandraEditedMakowski accepted the award on March 21, dedicating her speech to the “strong women of faith throughout history” who haven’t always been named or noticed.

In her speech she pointed out Biblical women who are examples of how to say “yes” to God. Makowski also mentioned the importance of following those examples and making women and children heard.

“We need to make a resolution. Perhaps we can resolve to count women and children and to challenge one another and our church to also count them as equally effective members and leaders in the church,” Makowski said.

Following the women of the Old and New Testament is of great importance to Makowski, and she believes it should be of great importance to others as well.

“Even though our culture might say no- and some of the positions in the church that we may feel called to serve say no- and perhaps our own inferiority or sense of shame, or our lack of faith in ourselves says no- our God says Yes- and that means that, if God says Yes- then by golly, we can say yes as well,” Makowski said.

IMG_7637Sr. Sandra Makowski, SSMN, is a member of the Sisters of Charity Foundation of South Carolina Board of Trustees. She received a Bachelor of Arts in Teaching from Trinity College and a Master of Religious Education and a Juris Canonici Licentiatus from Catholic University of America. She currently serves as the Chancellor of the Diocese of Charleston.

She has conducted numerous workshops and training sessions for tribunal auditors and parish administrators on the topics of church annulments and marriage law. In addition, she has published articles in professional periodicals and has been highlighted as a significant woman of the year for her groundbreaking work as a church lawyer.

Sr. Sandra is a member of the congregation of the Sisters of St. Mary of Namur.  Originally from Binghamton, New York, she came to South Carolina in 2006.