PHJC General Leadership teamSister Judith Diltz, Poor Handmaids of Jesus Christ was elected as General Superior of the Poor Handmaids of Jesus Christ Congregation in Dernbach, Germany on May 14. The international congregation of women religious serve in Germany, USA, the Netherlands, England, India, Kenya, Nigeria, Mexico, and Brazil.

In April and May, the Poor Handmaids of Jesus Christ (PHJC) congregation held its General Chapter in Dernbach, Germany, the founding place of the Poor Handmaids. Sister Judith was elected as General Superior of the congregation. Sister Annemarie Pitzl, from Germany was elected as vicaress. Sister Betty Vazheparambil, India, and Sister Jacqueline Injete, Kenya were elected as Councilors. This team will serve the congregation for the next six years. The installation for the General Council will be held in Germany on August 3, 2019.

Sister Judith reflects, “It is an incredible honor and responsibility to be elected Superior General of the Poor Handmaids of Jesus Christ at this point in our congregation’s history. The 50 participants of the General Chapter we have just concluded set directions for us to work on together in the nine countries where we minister.  Along with the recent canonization of St. Katharina Kasper, we are energized to continue to make a significant difference among God’s most poor and needy all around the world.”

A native of Mishawaka, Sister Judith was born to Raymond and Monabelle (Wade) Diltz. She took her first vows as a Poor Handmaid in 1969.

Since that time, she has ministered in education and served the Poor Handmaid Community. She taught English at Bishop Dwenger High School in Fort Wayne; Mater Dei High School and Kaskaskia College in Breese, Illinois; Marian High School in Mishawaka; and was the English and Humanities Professor/Faculty Assessment Coordinator at Ancilla College in Donaldson. Sister Judith also served as the PHJC Vocation Director, Postulant /Affiliate Director, and Director for Development.  She has been Provincial of the PHJC American Province since 2013.

She holds an associate’s degree from Ancilla College, Donaldson; a bachelor’s degree in English from University of St. Francis in Fort Wayne; a master’s degree in English from the University of Notre Dame, and a Ph.D. in Interdisciplinary Studies with a focus on writing as a spiritual process from the Union Institute & University in Cincinnati.

During General Chapter, the delegates created a congregational direction statement for life and mission.

This statement is the path in which the congregation will proceed or continued to proceed in the future. The statement reads:

Rooted in PHJC charism and spirituality, we commit to be communities in communion with each other and with all of creation.

We courageously witness this by

  • Advocating  non-violence of all forms in our communities and ministries
  • Implementing practices that protect and heal the earth
  • Standing with our sisters and brothers against injustices done to them
  • Networking with religious and civil organizations for justice.

    We apply our commitment to the circumstances of our specific provinces/pro-regions.

    Elections to fill the office of Provincial of the American Province will be held prior to August 2019 when Sister Judith is installed as General Superior in Dernbach, Germany.


Caption: The newly-elected  Poor Handmaids of Jesus Christ General Leadership Team: Sr. Jacqueline Injete General Councilor, Kenya; Sr. Judith Diltz General Superior, USA; Sr. Annemarie Pitzl, General Vicaress, Germany; and Sr. Betty Vazheparambil, General Councilor, India