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Saturday, October 17, 2009

Mater has a special place in the hearts of all Sacred Heart children

We celebrate the Feast of Mater on October 20, but Saturday the alums will have a Mass in her honor. The image of Mater is one of Our Lady as a young girl dressed in pink and seated with her work-basket at her side with an open book, but she has downcast eyes and seems to be deep in contemplation. All of our schools in all parts of the world have statues of Mater or pictures and often a special chapel in her honor. The original fresco is on the wall at the convent at the top of the famous Spanish Steps in Rome. It was painted by Pauline Pedreau, soon to be a Religious of the Sacred Heart; she painted the original in 1844. When I went to high school in 1944 at the Academy of the Sacred Heart in St. Charles, we had a centenary celebration and I was chosen to be Mater. I learned to love her and remember how we confided everything to her - success in our studies and games, even putting the basketball in her lap or laying our hockey sticks in front of her before games. Then, when I had the grace of being sacristan for her in Rome for several months, I really felt her presence. There is an altar in front of the picture now and priests come to say Mass there as she has worked miracles. Don't go to Rome without visiting her!

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