Miracle Moments Miracle Moments In Work Life

OME OF US REMEMBER the early days of (CHRISTUS) St. Mary Hospital. I, for one, first came to Port Arthur, Texas, as a 17-year-old small town girl to attend the St. Mary Nursing School because I was afraid to attend a larger college. I happened to be the youngest of nine children—and the only one who had the privilege of getting an education beyond high school.

From the very first time I set foot inside (CHRISTUS) St. Mary Hospital and began working in the nursing home, I experienced the love and concern that radiated from the 22 Sisters who ministered there. They worked from early to late and well into the night, and not one floor lacked the care of a Sister. The nursing students were sheltered and nourished by the education they received, as well as by the sisters—unusual women who lived quite a different lifestyle.

The sisters had left their homes in Ireland at the age of 16, bound for the mosquitoes and swamps of Port Arthur, and would not be returning home for 20 years. Telephone calls were only for dire emergencies and news from their family was often weeks old by the time it was received. The live-in Sisters were our mentors, friends, big sisters and surrogate mothers. Their presence was a gift of love and understanding. Their patience, caring personalities and living examples of sacrifice and obedience to God set a standard we could only hope to achieve in an entire lifetime. The Sisters cleaned, cooked, cared for patients and taught students while doing charitable acts and living a Christian life we could not explain. Storms, mosquitoes and their lack of money never dented their armor.

Through the years at CHRISTUS St. Mary, we have seen a small hospital rise to a state-of-the-art center that is now second to none. Technology and human resources have bonded to this day by the examples and guidance of a group of Sisters armed with the love of God, love for humanity and the belief that we will all reap what we sow.

Port Arthur is a better place because of the Sisters, and we are better people because of them. To each and every one of them, I speak for our entire hospital family when I say, “Thank you. We love you and are deeply grateful for your presence in our lives. You are our miracle.”

Mauverine Crouch
retired nurse
CHRISTUS St. Mary Hospital
Port Arthur, Texas