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Life-changing pilgrimage

Pilgrimage to Le Puy, France, lets student pilgrims connect deeper with the charism of the Sisters of St. Joseph

September 6, 2018

Daisy Cruz '20 and Caitlyn Keeve '20 in Le Puy, France.
Daisy Cruz '20 and Caitlyn Keeve '20 in Le Puy, France.

The pilgrimage to Le Puy, France, to walk in the footsteps of the University’s founders was a lesson in generosity, resilience and friendships.

Daisy Cruz ’20 and Caitlyn Keeve ’20 joined a summer tour hosted by the Association of Colleges of the Sisters of St. Joseph (ACSSJ). The group visited the city where the Sisters of St. Joseph first gathered in 1650, an experience that both Cruz and Keeve found to be inspiring and humbling.

“This trip deepened my understanding of the Sisters of Saint Joseph and created friendships with the other CSJ schools that will last forever. It was incredible to walk the same steps as our founding CSJs, and we left knowing that Le Puy is our second home,” says Cruz, a student leader in Campus Ministry.

Keeve, a leadership scholar, agrees. “I have gained a wonderful sense of courage and excitement to stand up for justice, just as the sisters did at the start of their journey; strengthened by their faith in God and trust in each other,” she says.

Keeve says that with every conversation she had with shop owners and locals in Le Puy and with her fellow student pilgrims, she felt her “mind and heart expand the best ways.”

“Because of this trip, I more clearly understand how important it is to know and value history, because of its power to inform our decision making today,” Keeve says. “As a student at the Mount, I am grateful to be a part of this legacy of bravery, generosity, and resilience.”

The ACSSJ connects the nine schools in the United States that were founded by Sisters of St. Joseph, including Mount Saint Mary’s in L.A., St. Joseph’s College in New York, Avila University in Kansas City, and St. Catherine’s in St. Paul, Minn. Each of these universities sent two student pilgrims on the journey.

Cruz and Keeve received a scholarship from Jane Harris Nadeau ’98, a Weekend/Evening College alumna and University regent, who went on a CSJ Heritage Tour to Le Puy herself in 2017.