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Friday, March 16, 2012
The Little Sisters of the Poor and my Mom
My mom was an amazing lady who cared very much for others including the little ones in utero waiting to be born. Every January she organized the parish bus for the March for Life and, except for the last January before she died, she was there with her walker making the treck up Capitol Hill. She sold red and white carnations on Mother's Day to support the local crisis pregnancy center and was herself a generous donor to the pro-life movement. She wrote frequent letters to the editor defending the babies, and sometimes defended the faith in her own parish from the errors of the resident dissidents. She wanted others to like her, but not enough to be silent when the truth was being tromped on.
She enjoyed her 37 grandchildren and 40 great grandchildren (many more since she died ten years ago) whenever she could. Fortunately she had some nearby. "Grandma" morphed into GG (for great grandma) in her later years. She loved it!
When one of my sisters asked a daughter what she thought it meant to dress modestly, she answered "To dress like Grandma." Mom almost always had on a skirt and on the lapels of her jacket she wore the little feet, a rose pin, and several other pro-life symbols. She was neat as a pin and had a cheerful disposition and a big smile. When she was dying she always shared that smile with the visiting nurses and aides. The closest she came to complaining was the forlorn question, "Why is it so hard to die?" Among her last words was "thank you" to the aide who came to give her a bed bath two days before she died. What a legacy and a challenge to those Mom left behind. When people comment on my cheerfulness, I always say it was a gift from my mom, and it's true. All my siblings are cheerful as well. What a great testimony to mom!
It was a blessing to me today to see the Catholic Key Blog about the Little Sisters of the Poor. It sent me on a walk with my mom down memory lane. I can't imagine a greater companion for that journey. Love you, Mom.