From 1-5 March 2020, I was invited to visit Marymount University (Arlington, Virginia, USA), in the context of the celebration of “Founder’s Week”, in the year celebrating the 70th anniversary of the University’s founding. It is difficult to put into words the interest and creativity with which this week dedicated to the founders was prepared: Eucharist in memory of the journey of life, spirit and mission of the RSHM; a moment of celebration open to all who have already had the opportunity to visit Béziers; a dialogue with students on the spirit and mission of RSHM; and with faculty about the challenges that this spirit and mission poses to all of us today, RSHM and all those who share our mission.
The genuine enthusiasm with which these different moments were experienced was supported by the dynamism of Dr. Victor Betancourt and Dr. Brian Doyle, who have committed to energize the university in simple and creative ways: they started the Appollonie’s campus cupboards that are spread through all university buildings (where products are discreetly placed to share with the poorest students at the university), and animate the Saints group which develop very significant social actions, helping students to live in Gailhac’s way, with others and for others.
I cannot fail to mention the simple, meaningful and attentive presence of the two RSHM (Jacqueline Porter and Jacqueline Murphy) who keep the flame of spirit and mission alive today and are the link with the first and all RSHM that gave life throughout these many years to Marymount.
And, most of all, I would like to highlight the deep enthusiasm and commitment of the President of the University, Dr. Irma Becerra, who impressed me so much by her conviction and determination to take on all the challenges of developing Marymount University’s intellectual excellence, balanced with the spirit and mission of a “life for all”. In her marvelous desire for effective continuity with the spirit of the RSHM that distinguishes Marymount University, namely her desire for unity in diversity and life for all, I see that the vibrant passion and the spirit that animated the sisters who founded and supported this university is intensely alive today.
Thank you, Dr. Irma Becerra and all for these wonderful moments.
Sr. Luisa Maria Almendra, RSHM