Congratulations, 2020 Ramonat Scholars!


2019-20 Ramonat Scholars Madeline Lawler, Emily Van Cleave, Sylvester Alonz, Grace O’Connor, and Maggie Reid with Sr. Jean Delores Schmidt, BVM

At the end of a remarkable year, the 2019-20 Ramonat Scholars presented their research at a Final Zoomposium on Wednesday, April 22. An audience of Loyola students, faculty, friends, and family joined the Scholars remotely to see and hear the results of their work.

Emily Van Cleave was awarded the Susan Ramonat Prize for Scholarly Excellence for her paper: “Where Is the Church?: Sr. Cecelia Goldman, M.M. and Black Liberation in St. Louis, 1968-1980.”

The 2019-20 seminar, titled How Women Religious Changed America, taught by Dr. Bren Ortega Murphy of Women’s Studies/Gender Studies and the School of Communication. Scholars explored the history of Catholic women religious [sisters and nuns] in what is now known as The United States. A core premise of the course is that these women were not only critical in the development of the American Roman Catholic Church, they were critical to the nature and character of the country itself. They built the largest independent health care system in the world and the largest private educational system in the United States. They served on battlefields and protest lines, in mining towns and urban slums. They were first responders in natural disasters and epidemics. They were among the first women to get PhDs and run corporations. They have stood up to the U.S. military and international corporations and The Vatican. They helped change the role of American women, the role of the American Catholic Church, and even the nature of American feminism.

The Ramonatti, as the group calls themselves, did in-depth research projects on a variety of American Women Religious:

  • Sylvester Alonz: “Who Is My Neighbor?; Rose Thering, O.P. and Contemporary Jewish/Catholic Activism”
  • Madeleine Lawler: “”Not Just Anybody: Sister Ignatia, C.S.A. and the Fight Against Alcoholism”
  • Grace O’Connor: “An Angry Daughter of the Church: Sr. Marjorie Tuite, O.P. and her Critical Role in Challenging Catholic Patriarchy”
  • Maggie Reid: “Corita Kent, I.H.M.: A Kaleidoscope of Hope”
  • Emily Van Cleave: “Where Is the Church?: Sr. Cecelia Goldman, M.M. and Black Liberation in St. Louis, 1968-1980”

Thank you to the judges for this year’s Ramonat Prize: Dr. Michelle Nickerson [History], Dr. Benjamin Johnson [History], Dr. Michael Murphy [Director of Catholic Studies and the Hank Center for the Catholic Intellectual Heritage].

Congratulations to all the Ramonat Scholars!