Swinging Sisters Redux

In the July eNewsletter we ran an article on the “Swinging Sisters.” A one-of-a-kind book authored by Madonna Dries Christensen, it’s the true story of a mother and her four daughters who became members of the Congregation of the Incarnate Word and Blessed Sacrament.

Before they entered the Convent, the four sisters Dorothy, Hazel, Gladys and Evelyn toured the country for several years as members of an all-girl band, the Texas Rangerettes. In 1938, along with their widowed mother, all four daughters joined the Convent. They taught academic subjects and music, including piano and choir, for many years right here in San Antonio’s Blessed Sacrament Academy.

seated: Sr. Catherine, Sr. Pius, Sr. Jude back row: Sister Genevieve, Sr. Dorothy

seated: Sr. Catherine (Dorothy), Sr. Pius (Mrs Jones), Sr. Jude (Hazel)  back row: Sister Genevieve (Gladys), Sr. Dorothy (Evelyn)

It’s a remarkable read and available through Amazon.com. The proceeds are donated by the author to BSA.

After reading the story, several of our alumnae sent remembrances of their own.

Carol Whitlock (3)Carol Whitlock, Blessed Sacrament graduate 1959, shared this story about St. Jude.  “She taught me typing.  It was my junior year and right after lunch.  Sr. Jude expected us to be in the classroom and have done our warm-up exercises by the time the bell rang to start the class.  Well, I felt that the lunch hour was free time and class shouldn’t start until the bell rang.  Every day it was a race between Sr. Jude and me as she stood at the door ready to lock it when the bell started ringing and I came up to the door to be inside as the first peal of the bell sounded.  I won most times, but occasionally she beat me and I had to go to Sr. Joseph for permission after being “late for class”.  It was a game to me — and I think it was a game to Sr. Jude also.  I had a good grade in the class so that was not problem there–just us both being stubborn.  I laugh about it every time I think about it.  Of course, if one of my own children did such a thing I would be quick to tell them to cut it out.  But I don’t think my parents ever knew about it.”

Rosemary KowalskiRosemary Kowalski, Chairman Emeritus of The RK Group, remembers her first encounter with the Jones family. “I remember seeing them in the hallways and thinking what an amazing transition that must have been–after touring with a band for all those years–to give their lives to Jesus,” she said. Kowalski attended kindergarten through 6th grade and two years of high school at BSA.

Both Carol and Rosemary remain faithful supporters of BSA campus programs.

“What those Jones girls sacrificed to follow the call of their Mother and of their God, to become Sisters Pius, Catherine, Dorothy, Jude and Genevieve is phenomenal to me to this day,” said Sister Odilia, CEO of Blessed Sacrament Academy.



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One Response to Swinging Sisters Redux

  1. Darla says:

    Sister Genevieve taught me in second grade at Nazareth Academy in Victoria. She was a saint who made learning fun and there was always music in her class!

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