How many wonderful priests I met there! We almost always had a seminarian in the summer and a transitional deacon during his final year before ordination. I began my journey in spiritual direction there as well with a dear priest for whom I continue to pray to this day. I also met a Jesuit, Fr. Robert Bradley, who proved that "faithful, holy Jesuit" is not an oxymoron. He was a great preacher and confessor and gave me some excellent advice about my newsletter. After retirement, he moved to Texas where he offered the traditional Latin Mass every Sunday at a Dallas parish. We visited him occasionally when we drove to Texas to see our son and his family in Austin. He's gone now, but I still ask him for advice and inspiration. I have his picture in my rosary box and love to pray to him and for him.
We moved to the Shenandoah Valley in 2002. It was a hard move because we had so many roots in Alexandria and so many friends. But do you ever leave your past behind? St. Louis continues to be a home away from home, especially the Poor Clare monastery that is within the St. Louis boundaries. They support our apiary with their prayers and we thank them by taking them honey every year.
What happy memories to sweeten my day.
St. Louis, pray for us.
P.S. Here's a photo of St. Louis Catholic Church today. This renovation happened long after we left. I love it! And I'm sure all our dear friends in Alexandria do as well.