“DO NOT FEAR; I HAVE CALLED YOU BY NAME AND YOU ARE MINE” – ISAIAH 43
Sister Jan was born in St. Joseph, Missouri, to Bob and Mary Ginzkey. She has one sister and four brothers. Even at a young age she was idealistic and saw a ‘future filled with hope.’ Her parents instilled the values of Christian living and inclusivity to their children by being living examples. They encouraged their children to be fully active and responsible, living by integrity and reflecting their values through the way they lived.
Sister Jan earned her BS in Education from Illinois State University. She taught for two years as a volunteer in the VIDA (Volunteers in Diocesan Action) at St. Mary’s in Walsenburg, Colorado. There was a deep longing within her waiting to be filled. During her second year with VIDA, she discovered that she was drawn to the Benedictine way of being and living. In Walsenburg, she lived with the Sisters and experienced their community through shared prayer, meals and life. She saw these women as pioneers who were creative in their ministries and strong in their faith.
Sister Jan joined Benet Hill Monastery in 1974 and made final vows in 1980. Her strongest gifts are compassion and determination (“some would say stubbornness,” she says) and a willingness to give all.
She taught for ten more years, loving to see the growth and wonder in each child. She felt called to combine teaching with a healing ministry. Sister Jan earned her masters in Physical Therapy from Texas Women’s University in Houston, Texas. She ministered as a therapist at Penrose Hospital in Colorado Springs and San Luis Regional Hospital in Alamosa.
She has served as Director of Benet Pines Retreat Center, on the Monastic Council, as Community Treasurer and now as Assistant Prioress. She helped create the meditation sites and pathways at Benet Pines. She served as Chairperson for the building of the new monastery. Sister Jan has been a member of LCWR (Leadership Conference of Women Religious) and is now on their Board.
Service and hospitality are the hallmarks of Sister Jan’s values. She expects the best of herself and tries to allow others to discover and utilize their talents and gifts. These and respect for each person and all creation guide her. They are her foundation rooted in Gospel values. Sister Jan believes there will always be a need for the religious life, and the Benedictine qualities are our gifts to the larger world.