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Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Feast of St. Louis

Today is the Feast of St. Louis and St. Louis, Missouri, is my hometown so I was remembering the huge statue of this French king on horseback that overlooks Art Hill in front of the St. Louis Art Museum in Forest Park. He looks so courageous and very dignified. He was also a holy man.
The picture is one taken of the convent cemetery in Grand Coteau. It has recently been "fixed up", if that is what one can say about a cemetery that has been restored - I have not yet seen it so do not know if it is anything like it was years ago when each black cross had a rosebush encircling it. Many of my friends are buried there so I always try to go there to pray when I am in Grand Coteau.
To return to Mary Ann Hardey and her school days and I have two stories that she herself told later. On the first day visits were allowed, Mary Ann's mother arrived. To her consternation, Mary Ann burst into tears when her mother asked her if she was eating well. She told her mother that the nuns put worms into the soup! When this was translated into French so that Mother Aude could understand, this rather staid and formal superior began to laugh as she tried to explain that what Mary Ann thought were worms were noodles. In France, soups were often made with noodles but Mary Ann had never seen these wiggley things before and thought she was being made to eat worms! The other story Mother Aude did not think amusing. It seems that the Bishop was coming to visit and Mother Aude wanted to present the children at their best. They were made to practice the formal curtsy with which they were to greet him. Then the superior left to go greet the Bishop. The children were overcome with awe; led by Mary Ann, they all bolted and hid. The superior led the Bishop into the room and found it empty! Remember, Mary Ann was only twelve, but she was soon trying her best to be perfect and had quite a conversion.

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