31 October 2011

Sister Mary Raphael Speer – 101 on October 31, 2011!

Many might think that October 31 is a day reserved for ghosts, goblins and trick or treating, but the day is special for another reason. Today everyone in the Georgetown Visitation Monastery and Georgetown Visitation Preparatory School community celebrated with their dear Sister Mary Raphael Speer on her 101st birthday (although many of the celebrants wore costumes)! A large group of students and faculty lined the main hallway of Founders Hall to serenade Sister with a rousing version of Happy Brithday.  Elvis "the King" Presley (aka Head of School Dan Kerns) presented Sister with a large bouquet of roses which she accepted with a huge smile.

Sr. Raphael was born on Halloween in 1910 in a suburb of Pittsburgh, PA.   After taking her vows as a Sister of the Visitation of Holy Mary at the Order’s monastery in Parkersburg, WV, she spent many years as a math and English teacher, a librarian and a school administrator.  She was also the Mother Superior of the Visitation community in Parkersberg. When that monastery closed in the early 1990's, Sister Raphael chose to join the Georgetown Visitation monastery.  These days she keeps all of the other Sisters on their toes with her razor-sharp mind, ever-present wit and an interest in each of the sisters and the school’s 490 students.   Sr. Raphael loves geography and can often be found searching an atlas to locate a new country in Africa or determine the distance between two cities.  And at 101 she still enjoys a mean game of Parchesi during the Sisters’ periodic game nights.

Sister Raphael’s inquiring mind and broad range of interests have only increased with the passage of years. Her witty comments are a constant source of enjoyment for all who know her; she'll often ask a thought-provoking questions like, "I wonder how spaghetti got its name?"  Her presence is a tremendous gift to our entire community!


Candice said...
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Maria said...
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Kingvtbo said...
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