|The conference program served as a guide to receptions, meals, prayers, and 31 panel sessions that brought colleagues and friends together to indulge in love of learning.|
On Monday, June 24, Malachy McCarthy, participated as a panel member in Session 7-Revisiting the Boston College Conference: Lessons Learned from a Collaborative Approach to Preservation. Along with Malachy, who is the Provincial Archivist for Claretian Missionaries USA-Canada Archives, Jennifer Head, Archivist for Sisters of Charity of the Blessed Virgin Mary, and historian & author Margaret McGinniss of LaSalle University, gave their take on working with religious archives at a time when women's and men's congregations are slipping away and traditional Catholic institutions may or may not be in a position to manage the archives. All of the panelists discussed the pros and cons of the collaborative approach. Margaret McGinnis emphasized that religious archives be more open and get used, that historians know some restrictions may apply. Jennifer Head talked about the BVM Sisters' work to establish a forever home for their archive which, like many religious archives, is a hybrid of corporate archive and family archive. Malachy McCarthy spoke of initiating the Boston College Collaborative, reporting that a working committee has been established and a paper is in the works. Malachy also emphasized the importance of religious archives establishing a glossary for their collections, since terms carry different meanings even within Catholic religious orders. He made available the white paper that Boston College released on June 7, 2019, announcing the establishment of a Catholic Religious Archives Repository at the college.
|Malachy McCarthy, Jennifer Head, and Maggie McGinnis listen to Patricia Wittberg, SC introduce their panel on collaborative approach to preserving religious archives.|
|The college bookstore created a sizeable, inspiring display of books researched, authored, and edited by conference panelists and attendees.|
While this conference happens only every three years, it is a great place for archivists of any faith to learn more about the workings of religious archives and the researchers who use them. If you are thinking about presenting or attending CHWR in 2022, the Cushwa Center will have the information you need.
Virginia Jung, OSB (center), enjoyed meeting up with more Benedictine sisters from around the country l. to r. :Mary Ann O'Ryan, OSB, (historian from St. Scholastica-Chicago) Laura Swan, OSB, (historian, author, archivist from Mt. Placid - Oregon), Rebecca Abel, OSB, (archivist from Immaculate Conception-Ferdinand, IN) and Judith Sutera, OSB (historian and author from Mount St. Scholastica-Atchison)
Professional Development Scholarships are available to Illinois Archivists. If you do not already receive For the Record from our State Archivist, Jesse White, here is the link with more information:
This Spring 2019 issue of For the Record includes a link to the Illinois Archival Repositories Directory. Check to see if your archive is listed. If it isn't, consider sending your information to include in the directory. I also suggest scanning the directory for Chicago area religious archives that are not CARA members and inviting them to join!