Hello to all of you who may have found this blog after my being away for eight weeks. During that time, I’ve finally completed a first draft of a novel and driven to Minnesota and back for a two-week vacation.
Now I’m ready to resume my Wednesday postings on this on-line memoir. In the coming weeks, I’ll post about my three years as a scholastic at Mount Saint Scholastica Monastery.
Way back in the fall of 2011, I posted a series of convent stories. When I ended those posts, I wrote the following:
This posting concludes the stories about my life in the novitiate. I’m going to turn now to stories about my growing-up years and my life with cats. In a few weeks, I hope to return to the convent postings and take up life in a Catholic grade school in Omaha, Nebraska.
Twenty months have passed since I wrote those words. What happened to those plans is that in January 2012 I read a posting by Manzanita on social justice. Her words sparked a six-month series of my own postings about my involvement in social-justice issues. Then for over a year I wrote about my childhood.
Many of you read those 2011 postings about my first eighteen months in the convent, but a number of you are new to my blog since then. If so, you may have some interest in a summary of my life in the novitiate, which I entered after graduating from college in June 1958. The following three posts summarize that time:
In addition to those posts, I did three on the difficulty of deciding whether to make first vows.
Finally, on December 6, 2011, I posted the story of my making first vows and the wonder of that day.
I appreciate how busy your schedules are as you try to read all your favorite blogs. So I suspect that few, if any, of you will have the time or inclination to peruse the seven postings listed above.
However, if you do have a wee bit more time, I encourage you to read the final posting about vow day on January 1, 1960, as it sets the background for the scholastic postings.
This photo was taken on the day I made first vows
and exchanged the white veil of the novitiate
for the black veil of the scholasticate.
The outside of the college chapel in which I made first vows.
The inside of the college chapel in which I made first vows.
On Saturday, January 2, 1960, Mother Alfred called me into her office and told me she’d planned to send me to Walsenburg, Colorado, to teach. However, a sister at the Omaha mission had been rushed to the hospital the day before, so I would take her place in a fifth-grade classroom for two weeks. Then I’d go to Colorado.
On Sunday, January 3, 1960, I boarded the train in Atchison, Kansas, and traveled north to Omaha, Nebraska. There, Sister Brennan met me and drove me to the convent next to St. Peter and Paul Grade School, Church, and Rectory.
The next day, I began to teach. I’d taken no teaching courses, but the state allowed me to teach on the condition that I take classes in the summer and work toward a certificate. The fact that I’d already graduated from college helped.
That’s the background for the upcoming scholasticate postings. Next Wednesday I’ll share with you a story of violence on an ice-laden playground in Omaha.
PS: Great news! Andi Hicks, a gifted artist, has narrated the audio of A Cat's Life: Dulcy's Story. She's given me an Irish accent so as to distinguish my voice from Dulcy's. Sure and I sound like a true Dubliner! The audio is now available on Amazon. Click here if you're interested.