At Victory Noll
Tuesday of the Tenth Week of Ordinary Time
Every time I visit Victory Noll, I think about Archbishop Noll and his close relationship with the Sisters of Our Lady of Victory. I think about this beloved bishop today. I can’t help think that he would be happy with the prayerful decision of our Sisters today, the decision to plan wisely for the future, the generous decision to transfer the ownership of the Holy Family Building and its land to the Saint Anne Communities. This decision reflects the always close and trusting relationship between our diocese and the Victory Noll Sisters. I am deeply grateful, Sisters, for your genuine ecclesial spirit, your wonderful generosity, and your loving concern for the elderly who in years to come will call this place and the new building their home.
It is good today to recall that this land used to be owned by Our Sunday Visitor – its dairy farm occupied much of the space where this chapel and the Holy Family building now stand. We know how generous Archbishop Noll was when he sold the farm to Father Sigstein and the Society at a very low price back in 1930. In the following years, Archbishop Noll set aside funds to build this chapel and the infirmary, now called Holy Family. In 1955, he donated this money he had saved to the Sisters. His donation was a substantial beginning to cover the cost of building the chapel and infirmary. Though he did not live to see the completion of these buildings, which were completed in 1960, Archbishop Noll is lovingly remembered here in this chapel named in his memory.
It seems providential to me that the generosity of Archbishop Noll is now reciprocated by our Victory Noll Sisters. You have stepped out in faith as so many of your sisters have done through the years. Saint Anne Communities walks with you in faith. Together, you are committed to the Church’s mission of love and mercy. I thank you both for your collaboration, mutual trust, and hard work. I pray that the Lord will bless your work and that what begins today will bear fruit for many years to come. The care of the elderly sisters and the future care of many other of our elderly brothers and sisters is a work of the Gospel. I believe our collaboration in this work will bear much good fruit, continuing the holy mission of the Victory Noll Sisters as missionary servants, a mission that will continue as it inspires our Saint Anne’s communities.
We must continue to trust in the goodness of the Lord, like Elijah in our first reading. The Lord came to His aid through the poor widow who, though she was at death’s door, gave the prophet nourishment. The result – not only was Elijah saved, but also the widow and her son who were able to eat for a year. The Lord does not forsake us. The Lord hears our prayers. We call upon the Lord today in the words of today’s Responsorial Psalm, Psalm 4: “Lord, let your face shine on us.” That is my prayer today: that the Lord’s face will shine upon us and our new venture. I also pray that the light which shines from Victory Noll, like the light described by Jesus in today’s Gospel, will continue to shine, that many will see our good deeds and glorify our heavenly Father!