Today I have the great pleasure of interviewing Sr. Maria Suso, O.P., a member of the Dominican Sisters of Mary, Mother of the Eucharist. Based in Ann Arbor, Michigan, the order is one of fastest growing in the country. They began in 1997 with just four sisters and now (humbly) boast more than 115 women.
Two years ago, Oprah Winfrey featured the sisters on her show and they captivated viewers with their bubbling, contagious joy. Just a few weeks ago, they returned to the airwaves to compete in the “The American Bible Challenge”, a popular new trivia series. In the first episode, the sisters squared off against two teams and emerged victorious, launching them into the semi-final round tonight at 9:00pm ET/8:00pm CT on the Game Show Network. I’ve seen a sneak peak of tonight’s episode and let me tell you: you don’t want to miss it. If the sisters win tonight, they move on to the finals where they could win a $100,000 prize.
Sr. Maria Suso is one of the three sisters competing on the show and also a dear friend from back in college, where even then she was known for her joy and holiness. After the sisters’ early victory in “The American Bible Challenge”, we sat down to discuss her experiences on the show, the relationship between Catholics and the Bible, and how we all can acquire more joy.
Watch or download our interview below:
2:01 – What was the most challenging part of the trivia show?
2:33 – How did being a religious sister prepare you for the game show?
3:37 – How do shows like this change the misperception that Catholics don’t know the Bible?
5:31 – Why is joy so important to the spiritual life?
6:54 – How can we find joy?
8:23 – How did you hone those spoon-flipping skills?
Q: How did being a religious sister prepare you for the game show?
Well, our daily life as sisters is very much a preparation for this kind of activity, as unusual as it might be. When we wake up in the morning we start right away with the Office of Readings, which is part of the Liturgy of the Hours, which Catholics all over the world pray everyday, especially priests and religious. That has long passages of Scripture that we really dive into.
Throughout the day we also pray the Psalms and other parts of Scripture, and of course have daily Mass. We also have a half-hour of meditation every morning, and most of the sisters will frequently use Scripture for that meditation.
Check out the Sisters of Mary website, SistersOfMary.org and be sure to like their excellent Facebook page.
Did you catch the sisters on the “American Bible Challenge”?