University announces Sister Norma Pimentel as 2018 Laetare Medal recipient

first_imgEditor’s note: A version of this story appeared in the print edition of The Observer on March 20.Notre Dame will award Sister Norma Pimentel — head of the Catholic Charities of the Rio Grande Valley — the 2018 Laetare Medal, the University announced in a press releaseSunday.Each year, Notre Dame awards the Laetare Medal to an American Catholic “whose genius has ennobled the arts and sciences, illustrated the ideals of the Church and enriched the heritage of humanity.”According to the release, both of Pimentel’s parents immigrated from Mexico to the United States and she spent much of her childhood traveling between the two countries. After completing her final vows and entering the Missionaries of Jesus, she worked closely with immigrants, who were often brought to the sisters’ convent.Pimentel said this experience shaped her understanding of her faith in concrete ways.“Scripture comes to life and our faith becomes flesh,” she said in the release. “It is not until you find yourself in front of the face of the immigrant child or mother that you will understand this. It is a moment of realizing we are all one human family.”Since 2008, Pimentel has directed charitable programs for the Diocese of Brownsville, Texas, including “emergency food and shelter, housing assistance, clinical counseling and pregnancy care to all four counties in the Rio Grande Valley.”University President Fr. John Jenkins said Pimentel has lived out the call to recognize Christ in the marginalized through her work with refugees and migrants.“Jesus said, ‘when I was a stranger, you invited me in.’ Sister Norma Pimentel has given her life to welcoming Christ in the immigrant and refugee,” Jenkins said in the release. “In awarding her the Laetare Medal, Notre Dame celebrates her witness of seeking and generously serving Christ in the most vulnerable.”Pimentel said in the release that she was grateful to receive the 2018 Laetare Medal.“I am truly honored to receive this award,” she said. “This year’s Laetare Medal brings forth the cries of the suffering for the world to hear. I would like to thank the University of Notre Dame for this recognition and for being a voice for immigrants in our midst.”Pimentel will be awarded the medal on May 20 at commencement.Tags: 2018 Commencement, Commencement 2018, Immigration, Laetare Medal, Sister Norma Pimentellast_img read more

Tennis champ Kvitova suffers knife attack, injures playing hand

first_imgBy Robert MullerPRAGUE, Czech Republic (Reuters) – Two-time Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova suffered severe injuries to her playing hand yesterday defending herself from a knife-wielding intruder in her apartment, an attack she said left her “fortunate to be alive”.The tennis world number 11 said she would need to consult specialists about the injury, and gave no indication when she might be able to play again.“In my attempt to defend myself, I was badly injured on my left hand,” she said on her Twitter account @Petra_Kvitova. “The injury is severe and I will need to see specialists, but if you know anything about me I am strong and I will fight this.”Kvitova was attacked in her flat in the city of Prostejov, about 260 km (160 miles) southeast of Prague, the site of a tennis club where she, men’s world number 10 Tomas Berdych and other top-ranked Czech tennis players train.Karel Tejkal, spokesman for the Czech Fed Cup team, told Czech media the morning attack had been “a random criminal act” and she had not been specifically targeted.The Czech Republic won the Fed Cup, the premier national team competition in women’s tennis, for the third year in a row in November.The website of newspaper Mlada Fronta Dnes said the intruder presented himself to Kvitova as a boiler inspector.“What has happened to me was not pleasant at all, but it is already behind me,” she said in an earlier statement issued on the Fed Cup team’s Facebook page.“The main thing for me now is that the doctors will determine how my hand is doing. I trust them and I believe that it will end well.”The hard-hitting left-hander has been a near constant in the world’s Top 10 since 2011, rising as high as number 2 that year, when she won the first of her two Wimbledon singles titles.She slipped in the rankings this year but showed improved form in recent months, winning the Wuhan Open title in October and the season-ending WTA Elite trophy in November.In 1993, then-world number 1 Monica Seles was stabbed courtside during a break at a tournament in Germany by a man who admitted having an obsession with her rival Steffi Graf. The attack forced Seles out of tennis for two years.last_img read more