Smiling nuns and smiling pupils


St. Joseph Academy Frontenac MO Sisters of St. Joseph.

I was exploring the web just recently and came across hundreds of photos of meticulously uniformed dressed older boys and girls and smiling nuns. Mostly smiling girls and smiling nurses and smiling nuns. The smiling nuns were in happy classrooms teaching the smiling children all sorts of subjects from chemistry to biology to maths. The smiling nuns were proud to put the stripes on the nursing caps of the smiling young nurses. The contentedness on the children’s faces, and the enthusiasm of the nuns showed that those children were going to go far in life.


Oblates Sisters of Providence caring for the orphaned children

African American order of nuns who educated, and cared for orphaned black children in the south. The Sisters are known for the fine education they provide in their Academy to people of color when the Catholic Church still had segregation in the South.

I then looked up photos of children in poor circumstances, there were very few photos of nuns amidst them with smiling faces at all. The contrast saddened me, as it told of the disparity between the rich and poor, and how they were so vastly treated by the religious.

For instance, there is not a photo of a smiling nun with industrial school child inmates from Goldenbridge. Nothing whatsoever to represent any kind of happy past. Nothing at all for the nonentities. Not even a smile.


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