Linda Patrick, SNJM
Sister Linda Patrick was born in Portland, OR, the fifth of six children, four boys and two girls born to Adeline and Jerome Patrick. Her family lived in Holy Redeemer parish in North Portland, where she and all of her siblings attended the parish school. She had wonderful Holy Names teachers who managed to control and actually teach classrooms of about 50 students. In the fifth grade she began to take piano and cello lessons.
Linda attended St. Mary’s Academy, which was a life-changing experience for her. She was involved in theatre and music, but the exposure to a larger world and theology classes opened her eyes to a loving, dynamic God, not just the one encountered in the Baltimore Catechism. During these years, the civil rights movement and the assassination of President John F. Kennedy also expanded her world view.
Linda entered the Sisters of the Holy Names in August 1967, with no idea how radically the community was changing in light of the dynamic spirit of Vatican II. Her group of 13 wore green suits rather than the standard postulant attire. The novitiate was a challenging time of adjusting to evolving rules and regulations while still influenced by traditional ideas.
After completing her degree from Marylhurst College, she began her education career at St. Ignatius School in Portland, teaching fifth and sixth grade for three years, then moved on to Holy Redeemer School for five years. Next came six years teaching seventh and eighth graders at The Madeleine School in Portland. Her final nine years of teaching found her back at St. Ignatius as the eighth-grade homeroom teacher.
Linda taught in a summer program in Jonestown and Clarksdale, MS for two consecutive summers during the 1990s. Seeing the poverty of the people in the area and yet their spirit of joy and hope rekindled the spark for social justice that she had experienced at St. Mary’s.
In 1995, Linda was asked to join the administration of St. Mary’s Academy as Assistant Principal of Student Life, which she found energizing and challenging. She was able to work with a dedicated and talented faculty to support and encourage students through a wide variety of student activities. After 20 years, Linda knew it was time to end what had been a life-giving and life-enhancing ministry.
Currently Linda serves on Holy Names committees. She is a member of St. Andre Bessette parish in downtown Portland, where she volunteers during morning hospitality time, providing a welcome, a warm meal, clothing and hygiene items for guests who live in on the streets and in single rooms. The adventure continues.