Sr. Jane Russell, OSF

Sr. Jane Russell, OSF
Sr. Jane Russell, OSF
Associate Professor, Canonical Mandatum from the Diocese of Charlotte,

Meet Sr. Jane Russell, OSF

If theology is “faith seeking understanding” (St. Anselm’s description), everyone has theological questions, whether they know it or not. The Abbey’s two required Theology courses are good opportunities to carry on that quest for deep understanding.

I’m a Franciscan (School Sisters of St. Francis) teaching at a Benedictine college and living with Sisters of Mercy! I have also been on a 20+-year campaign to maintain a “Green Team” for recycling and other earth-friendly practices on campus.

When not in the classroom, can often be found:
You might find me singing with the Abbey Chorus, cantoring for Sunday Mass at Sacred Heart Convent, or painting.

Examples of the classes taught by Sr. Jane Russell:


  • Ecclesiology; Fundamental Theology;
  • Women & Men in Ministry; The Future of Ministry

Undergraduate & Deaconate* Formation

  • Introduction to Scripture: Old Testament; Intro. to Scripture: New Testament
  • Paul and His Letters
  • Christian Thought I (Early to Medieval); II (Reformation to Modern)
  • Introduction to Theology; Theology of Human Existence; Foundations of Catholic Faith;
  • Theology of the Church [& Sacraments]; Ecumenism
  • Ministry: Theology and Practice
  • Current Issues in the Church
  • Eschatology
  • Theology and Science;
  • Catholic Social Teaching
  • Theology of the Holy Spirit
  • Women in the Christian Tradition
  • Christ & Freedom: Perspectives on Theology of Liberation
  • Honors Seminar (Coord.): The Problem of God
  • The Catholic Tradition; Historical Theology II: Reformation/Modern

Adult Education (Non-Credit)

  • Church History. Jesus in the Gospels. “Have You Been Saved?”
  • Ecumenism.
  • Technology & Christian Hope.
  • Tending God’s Garden: Spirituality & Practice for an Ecozoic Age.
  • Reflections on She Who Is.
  • B.A., Alverno College
  • M.A., University of San Francisco
  • Ph.D., University of Notre Dame
  • Review of Bryan Massingale. Racial Justice and the Catholic Church. School Sisters of St. Francis Pastoral Ministry Newsletter 39:2 (June 2021), 6-9.
  • Review of Elizabeth Johnson, Creation and the Cross. SSSF Pastoral Ministry Network Newsletter 39.1 (June, 2020), 4-7.
  • “Sin and Forgiveness: The Church’s Involvement.” The MAST Journal (publication of the Mercy Association in Scripture and Theology) 25:2 (2018), 15-19.
  • “John Polkinghorne and the Science/Theology Dialogue.” St. Joseph Center, Milwaukee, WI, 5/20/17.
  • “Franciscan Women in Pastoral Ministry after Vatican II.” Conference on “Women and the Franciscan Tradition,” St. Bonaventure University, July, 2016.
  • Review of Kathleen Cahalan, Introducing the Practice of Ministry and Edward Hahnenberg, Theology for Ministry in SSSF Pastoral Ministry Network Newsletter 36:2 (Jan., 2016), 8-10.
  • Review of Diarmuid O’Murchu’s God in the Midst of Change. Reprinted in SSSF Pastoral Ministry Network Newsletter 35:2 (May, 2014), 5-6.
  • “Profile Update: Sister Mary Dingman, `Aging and Saging.’” SSSF PMN Newsletter 34:2 (March, 2013), 5-7.
  • “Comments on the USCCB’s Global Climate Change.” In Confronting the Climate Crisis: Catholic Theological Perspectives. Jame Schaefer, ed. Milwaukee, WI: Marquette University Press, 2011. 439-45.
  • “Sister Leanne’s Holistic Ministry. U.S. (Online newsletter of SSSF, U.S. Province, May, 2010), Reprinted in Women of Hope (SSSF Vocation newsletter) April, 2015, p. 2.
  • Report on the Women’s Consultation in Constructive Theology, for Proceedings of the Sixty-Second Annual Convention, Catholic Theological Society of America, 64 (2009), 150f.
  • “Sister Mary Carroll’s Ministry of Acompañamiento. U.S (Tabloid of SSSF, U.S. Province), Jan. 2009.
  • “Sister Anna Wolfe: Chaplain Emerita Extraordinaire” U.S. Jan., 2008, 12.
  • Review of Thomas P. Rausch, Towards a Truly Catholic Church: An Ecclesiology for the Third Millennium. SSSF Pastoral Ministry Network Newsletter 29.2 (Jan. 2008), 6-7.
  • Review of Joel Primack & Nancy Abram, The View from the Center of the Universe. PMN Newsletter 28:3 (Jan. 2007), 4-6.
  • “Sister Mary Hettich `Reveals the Healing Presence.’” U.S. Jan., 2006.
  • “Church Teaching on Peace and Justice—Resources.” PMN Newsletter 27:3 (Jan. ‘06), 4-5.
  • Review of Elizabeth Johnson’s Truly Our Sister: A Theology of Mary in the Communion of Saints & Dangerous Memories: A Mosaic of Mary in Scripture. PMN Newsletter 26:2 (Dec. ’04), 10-11.
  • “Sister Maureen Makes a Path toward the Peaceable Kingdom.” U.S. Dec-Jan, 2003-2004.
  • “The DRE Who Ran the Parish.” SSSF PMN Newsletter 25:1 (May ’03), 1-2.
  • “S. Catherine Kever: Prison Chaplain.” U.S. Feb-Mar, 2003, 5.
  • Review of Elizabeth Johnson’s Friends of God & Prophets. SSSF PMN Newsletter 23:1 (May ’01), 4-5.
  • “Love Your Enemies: Church as Community of Non-Violence.” In The Wisdom of the Cross: Essays in Honor of John Howard Yoder. Eds. Stanley Hauerwas, et al. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1999. 373-88.
  • “SSSF in the U.S.: E Pluribus Unum.” Leadership Conference of Women Religious, The Occasional Papers 26:2 (Fall 1997) 3-12.
  • “`A Holy Newness’: The Franciscan Movement as Leaven for Renewal of the Church.” The Cord 46:6 (Nov-Dec ’96) 287-299.
  • “Walking in Darkness.” Sisters Today 67 (Nov. 1995) 412-13.
  • “Tax Resistance and Conflicting Ecclesiologies: A Case Study.” Pastoral Sciences 4 (1985) 91-107.

Poetry & Art:

  • “Sister Water” (p. 6), “Convent Quarantine Blues” (p. 16) and “Deficit Spending of the Working Class” (p. 46). Agora 55 (Belmont Abbey College, 2022).
  • “Planter Full of Yellow” (p. 1), and “Patio Chat” (pp. 25-26). Agora 55 (Belmont Abbey College, 2022).

I have studied many aspects of the twentieth-century Catholic renewal, from small Christian communities to liberation theology to the Christian Initiation of Adults. I pay increasing attention in recent years to the interface of theology and science, especially in relation to the long-term flourishing of the Earth community.

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