Sister Joan Barina was born in Racine, Wisconsin in 1929. She worked at St. Luke’s Hospital, and at the University of California, before entering the Medical Mission Sisters in 1961. Her first assignment in our Community was as chief technologist at Holy Family Hospital in Atlanta, Georgia. She then served as Holy Family Hospital’s chief technologist in Patna, India, where she also started a medical laboratory school. When she returned to the U.S. in 1973, Sister Joan worked as a medical technologist with the Public Health Service of California, earned an advanced degree in microbiology, then joined the staff of the Alaska Native Medical Center in Anchorage. In 1979 she began what became over 30 years of ministry in religious education and pastoral work with Mercy Sister Joyce Ross on Alaska’s Kenai Peninsula. Both Sisters co-authored a book about their experiences, A Journey with the Real Church: Faith in the Last Frontier. Today Sister Joan and Sister Joyce are in mission with the Mercy Sisters in Albany, New York.