This Thursday, June 16 at 3 p.m., in the gardens of Somme School, teachers, parents, and “little wolves” celebrated their “sister” Helen Marie, the cheerful and vigilant perennial that generations have witnessed.
They waited for her and set up a guard of honor, up to the red carpet and the throne where she took her place “with all majesty”.
Director Pascal Lacausade read a humorous script with a pun on the number 100. She then carried Sister Helen Marie’s head with a crown bearing the inscription for 100 years and gave her a festive sash with the words “Happy Birthday”.
Then all the “mistresses” Mmes BERGÈRE, CRABARIE, HONDAA, LACAUSSADE, MOHORADE, PLANCHET, TREUVEUR-CAZAUBON and VERGER took turns reading a short paragraph from her autobiography. Note, of course, that there is the only “teacher” of the school taking care of CM2, Mr. TACHON.
He followed the letter of thanks to OGEC President Mathieu PERETTO who also presented him with a huge flower bouquet.
As Sister Helen Marie liked to take part in the festivities and especially in the carnival, she was the mistress of the outfit I liked to wear, to laughter and applause.
Then a nice surprise, two singers from the musical “Bernadette de Lourdes” Sarah Caillebotte and Cedric Bilzman came to sing him the iconic song of “Madame”.
This song was taken up by kindergarten children who also translated it in sign language, because throughout the year the school participated in a comprehensive solidarity project with speaker Céline CLÈVE. The musicians were pleasantly surprised to congratulate them.
Then the sixth graders of St. Joseph’s College, the students last year at Somme, the students of the college choir accompanied by the music teacher Roland Duvaux, with the singers, translating two songs from the music, were taken up in the chorus by everyone because they are both known as “Madame” and “Go” say!”. We noted the presence of the Director of the College of Saint-Joseph / Peyramale Frédéric REYNAUD and Professors Philippe POUZET and Lidwine MAZZONETTO.
Note, moreover, the gift given by the school staff to Sister Helen Marie, an admission ticket to … the musical “Bernadette de Lourdes”, of course, which delighted the cheerful and attentive perennial.
The second surprise, the arrival of Mayor Thierry Lafitte, accompanied by Vice Mayor Odette Menviel Larousse, who made a speech on the occasion, presenting flowers, gifts and decoration in Lourdes at the time of Jean-Paul II’s arrival. The two chosen ones did not hesitate to sing again with each “Madame” song.
Then it was time to make a birthday cake topped with the inscription One Hundred Years. Sister Helen Marie enthusiastically extinguished the candles, with the help of… the mayor.
Finally, the APEL of Soum headed by Myriam VAL provided snacks and drinks for children, while the OGEC provided a snack for adults.
The only regret in the afternoon was that the school could not receive more guests (because many parents of new and old students as well as former students wanted to be there), given the climatic conditions, the shaded space available to it and in general safety. The number of students and the number of guests including representatives of APEL, OGEC, the College and the Castres Sisters… was really large.
Sister Helen Marie Biography:
“On June 16, 1922, at one in the morning, Sister Helen Marie was born in Tarn. She is the third daughter in a family of four children: three girls and a boy.
She studied in Lafort, with the Massac sisters, where her father, who worked in the railways, was transferred. Unfortunately, Sister Helen Marie lost her dear parents at a very young age.
In 1939, she returned to Castres Abbey. In 1940, I took the habit. She made her first vows in 1942, and confirmed her permanent vows in 1946.
She began her life as a nun in Clermont-Ferrand. Then she left to take care of the children in an orphanage in Limoges. Her trip took her to Rouvroy-les-Mines and then to Hérault in Saint-ital, with the children, in a clinic.
Finally, it was gratifying that Sister Helen Marie arrived at Lourdes in February 1951, at the time of the Feast of the Apparitions.
That time in Lourdes, young ladies Jilin He ran a kindergarten and school. Sister Helen Marie found her place there with her youngest.
When these young women retired, it was the Custer sisters who took over the management of this institution. Being very involved in this community, Sister Helen Marie took care of Mr. Le Monnier for many years. We even had the pleasure of celebrating its centenary at the school.
What fond memories of our school, Sister Helen Marie! And with all the sisters who meant so much to you and us: Sister Marie Seraphine, Sister Jean Paul, Sister Saint-Andre, Sister Marie Edouard, Sister Françoise, Sister Colette Marie, Sister Clotilde, Sister François Regis, … and the sisters with whom you live today.
All those picnics with the kids, those snacks, those parties and carnivals where you were well disguised in your clothes 1900, Your hat, your gloves, your colored glasses and your high heels… Nobody recognized you and I enjoyed it!
You are the only person from this entire school who has had the honor of meeting Santa Claus every year, when we only heard the bells!
We also remember all the festivities and masses with children, which you helped us to prepare and this altar that you beautifully decorated with beautiful bouquets.
The little ones are your whole life!
At the age of 98, I retired and was forced into that dreaded virus.
The memories and anecdotes you’ve told us so often that if you’ll allow it, we’ll unearth one of them.
One day a mother comes to see you, Sister Helen Marie, and tells you: “ Yesterday my son invited a little friend home, and he was very happy to announce that he had a little sister. He said to my son: – But you don’t have a little sister! So my very upset son replies: – But yeah, I’m in school, I have my sister Helen!
And this little child is right, for we all here, in our immaculate school in Somme, have our dear sister Helen! »