is memorable for me because of the constant battles between our male
teacher and two of the boys who were the class “tough guys. These were
physical confrontations, not verbal. My sister had started school at St.
Matthew’s Parochial School but there wasn’t a vacancy in my grade level
so for the first year we lived at Evans St I stayed at the Thompson.
Then I got lucky. There was a new Sister Superior at St Matthews, Sister
St. Paulinus, who’d known me at St. Joseph’s Parish in Malden. She’d
been my First Communion class instructor and had been the first person
that I could recall that told me “Go West, young man!” So I was accepted
for the 7th grade. Sister St Paulinus was a sweet little old lady, but my
new teacher was Sister Mary Roque who was one tough cookie. She was
not hesitant to knocking your head against the blackboard ti get your attention
fully engaged on the math problem you couldn’t solve. In the 8th grade I
had an older nun, Sister Mary Stephen but she was not a pushover, either.
The nuns of St Matthew’s were from the Order of the Sisters of St Joseph
and believed in the old “spare the rod, spol the child” adage, I believe. My
sister has good memories of her first grade teacher Sister William Patricia
but I once saw her grab one of the older boys by the ear and push him into
a snowbank when he used bad language.
The church itself was a huge brick building with a beautiful interior but on
Sundays my Dad really like going to the masses said by Father Beksha.who
said Mass so quickly Dad called it the “Beksha Express”.
Most of the kids in Evans St neighborhood attended St. Matthews as well,
and it was where my sister took First Communion and where I had my
Confirmation. I was sad to hear that the parish school was closed a few years
back and combine with one from a neighboring parish.
|Cheryl & I on my Confiimation Day|
Years later, after we’d moved to Abington, Dad was pleased to find out that
Father Beksha had as well and the “Beksha Express” was now at St Bridget’s
Written for the Family History Writing Challenge