The path of a good woman is indeed strewn with flowers; but they rise behind her steps, not before them.” – John Ruskin
Having been a priest for 28 years now, I have learned one important lesson: that without women the Church would collapse!
Clearly there were women who supported the mission of Jesus and travelled with him and his disciples until the end. Tellingly, Jesus appeared first to Mary Magdalene after his resurrection and then to the other disciples. The mission of St. Paul seems to have been substantially funded by a few women of means who converted to the Christian faith after hearing Paul preach.
The unsung heroes of the Catholic Church in America have been the women religious who founded, administered, and taught in our Catholic schools. By all accounts, their legacy in establishing the Catholic parochial school in the United States is without parallel anywhere in the world.
When you look at our Catholic schools and parishes today, you see that their success by and large rests with lay women—and Holy Redeemer is no exception.
I have seen that we have a friendly, efficient and well-run parish office administered by two competent women of faith, Kathy “B” (Battilega), and Kathy “K” (Kersey). Sadly, Kathy Kersey, who handles the afternoon shift in the office, has discerned that it is time for her to retire.
It is hard to capture the essence of any human being with words, but if I had to choose a few, they would be dedication, steadiness, discretion, quiet passion, humor and joy.
She has been blessed with four grandchildren, and another one is on the way, and she realizes that now is the time to enjoy them and to spoil them some more.
I am also aware that she has a passion for gardening and would like to spend more time outdoors tending to her plants and flowers.
Though I am just one month shy of one year in the parish, I have come to thoroughly appreciate the presence of Kathy “K” and will miss her. Her last day will be Friday, May 24.
As is typical of Kathy, she doesn’t want us to make a fuss over her departure. But I don’t think she’d mind if those of you who know her were to express a word of thanks for her service in the days ahead.
We wish you a joyful and graced retirement, Kathy, and thank you for your faithful and loving service of Holy Redeemer Parish!