The SND Gospel Witness Award recognizes employees or volunteers in the SND national network who give witness to Jesus’ spirit of compassion, hope, and joy, and especially to those who experience poverty in its various forms. Award recipients reflect and nurture the Notre Dame charism, spirit, and mission within their professional communities and among all with whom they minister.
Sr. Donnalee Resar wrote the following nomination for Sr. Barbara:
Sister Mary Barbara Soplata is a phenomenal teacher and inspiration at two schools: Julie Billiart School in Lyndhurst and Notre Dame Elementary School in Chardon.
One of Sister Barbara’s special traits is compassion for the poor. She helps children become aware of others in need through mission awareness and fundraising endeavors. Sister Barbara
- Organizes children to do holiday face painting to help the poor
- Purchases and prepares fleece material so families from Gesu Parish, SND’s and children from NDES can work together to make blankets for Blessing House
- Recycles aluminum cans to protect the earth and raises money for global missions
Because of the 2020 stay at home orders, NDES did not achieve its usual monetary support for the missions. Sister’s concern for the children at St. Julie’s School in Uganda, led her to mention the need to her family so they sold an airplane from their father’s collection. They used those funds to:
- Purchase phonics books for St. Julie School
- Add $1000 to our donation for a well at the Uganda Mission
- Continue the development of our outdoor classroom at NDES
At NDES, Sister Barbara teaches enrichment lessons to Grades K to 4, making the children aware of the beauty of God’s creation. The children observe the cycle of the monarch butterfly, study how trees are the source of maple syrup, experience and measure the growth of plants, and celebrate historical and local events.
Sister Barbara tutors individual students and appreciates each child's abilities. She is gifted at assessing their needs and helps them make progress. Children often express appreciation for the growth she has helped them achieve.
All of us at NDES are so happy for Sister Barbara for being recognized for giving witness to Jesus’ spirit of compassion, hope and joy. Congratulations Sister Barbara!