|S. Mary David (right) with S. Ephrem Hollermann|
As some of you will know, I entered the community in 2007, so I only knew S. Mary David in the last years of her life. In those years, we established a real friendship and I'm grieving her death, even though I know she was very ready for the next stage in her being. And the reason I'm grieving is not because she was so successful or a good role model for women, but because she was a kind and thoughtful person. She paid attention to a person as an individual. For instance, when I was going on my first visit home to England, she took me all over the monastery taking pictures, so that I could show my family and friends where I was: "It'll help them adjust to be able to imagine you in your new home", she said. S. Mary David also shared her thoughts with me about living the monastic life. We discussed the difficulties, challlenges and blessings, and she introduced me to authors whom she admired and who had helped her along her path to God. I'm grateful for the insights she gave me.
For all these reasons, and many more, I'm saddened by her death, but I'm glad to be grieving. To grieve for someone means that you loved them and that they loved you, and you made a difference in one another's lives. It's a kind of sadness that I wouldn't want to miss. So, "thank you", S. Mary David, for giving me cause to grieve.
Karen Rose, OSB