31 Days of the Little Way: A Connection from the Past

Sometimes when our children ask us whether something in the house belongs to Mama or to Baba, I remind them that everything we own isn’t “mine” or “his,” but “ours.”
The story I am sharing today is John’s, but since I’m his wife, it’s ours—or, at least, he’s letting me tell it.
John works for Stevenson University, which was founded as Villa Julie College by the Sisters of Notre Dame De Namur. Today Stevenson is no longer affiliated with the order or the Catholic Church, but the Sisters have their province office and residence on a property adjacent to Stevenson’s Greenspring Campus, and they invite the university community to celebrate the institution’s heritage and founding every Oct. 1 with a Mass and a tea.
Every year when John goes to visit he asks about the Sisters he remembers from his days as a student at Arthur Slade Regional Catholic School in Glen Burnie, Md. Sometimes he hears about a Sister who has passed on, or another who has moved to another part of the United States.
This year, though, John encountered one of the Sisters who taught him in seventh and eighth grade, Sister Francis Regina. John was asking for her, learned she was there, and when they met, they recognized each other.

That might not sound remarkable, but they had last seen each other in 1981.

I’m never surprised that anyone who knows John would remember him—he’s very memorable—but it had been 35 years! Sister Francis taught him math for two years. She recalled that he had been a good student and that his hair had been much blonder then.
John remembered Sister Francis being taller—but, of course, he may have been a little shorter in eighth grade.
Now she is retired and living on a property adjacent to Stevenson—the university where John works.
Isn’t it amazing how God brings people into our lives at different times? He connects and reconnects us to individuals who can teach and challenge and strengthen us, bring back memories and create new ones. John had the opportunity to tell her about himself and his family, proudly pulling out photos of our boys to share.
And here when we rushed out the door to get to work and school, I thought it would be just an ordinary day.

Catholic Review

The Catholic Review is the official publication of the Archdiocese of Baltimore.