Sister Sheila shares her story.
Born and baptized in 1933 in Waterloo, Iowa, our family moved to southern CA when I was three years old. My two younger brothers and I were blessed to have both parents together with us and they provided a Catholic education for each of us through high school. I attended Immaculate Heart College on a scholarship. By the time I was 22, I had earned a BA in Mathematics, knew I wanted to teach, and prayed about a religious vocation.
I entered the Sisters of Notre Dame at their Los Angeles novitiate in 1955 and immediately began my career as a high school teacher at Notre Dame Academy. I had the religious name Sister Mary LaTier when I made my first profession in 1958; the reference to “three or third” was my choice to honor the Holy Spirit.
Teaching math as a Sister dedicated to Catholicism was a challenge which I met by beginning each class period with a brief bio of a woman saint, even when for two years I taught geometry in a coed archdiocesan high school. I have also been privileged to accompany individual high school girls as each one prayed over and chose a religious vocation.
My Diamond Jubilee year will be 2018. I praise God for being with me through all the marvelous changes that have marked the maturation of religious life. We OFTEN each day pray “Thy Will be done … ” by me—as God lets me recognize it—with my talents.
Eventually God replaced positions of leadership with responsibilities as crossing guard and even seated jobs as receptionist, but HE is there with me.
The calling which I cherish now is “Adoration Sister” when I spend three hours each week bringing my Sisters, Associates and friends to prayer before the Eucharistic Presence in our convent chapel. I have them with me as I pray the “Te Deum” offering praise and adoration on behalf of all who are in ministry.
I am a happy and grateful 84-year-old Sister of Notre Dame!
In 2017, the Sisters of Notre Dame, California Province, received a grant from SOAR! to replace windows in their convent.