A confession to make

The office was quiet this morning with only the custodian and I moving about. The family service counselors are all on spring break, my secretary has the flu and the two administrators in adjacent offices are away for a conference. It’s probably more reflective even than yesterday’s time of Recollection.

I stopped by the Akta Lakota Museum & Culture Center. Dixie, our museum director, is working with a woman from the South Dakota State Art Museum to evaluate our collection for the most significant pieces and look towards the future. How do we let people know and have access to the Native American art and artifacts of importance that we have? What kinds of exhibits would be good to pull together? What kinds of art are missing from our collection that we should try to go after if they become available? It’s good to collaborate with other agencies and draw on their expertise.

I partook of the freshly made popcorn at the maintenance shop during morning break. Besides the walk around tours of campus I do when I can, breaks are a good chance to check on our facilities crew and get updates on all the projects that they are working on. With the elementary school empty during break, this is a great time for projects the crew can’t get to during a normal school day.

I traveled two hours each way to the Rosebud Indian Reservation for an hour-long meeting. In South Dakota we just get used to distances, and the time in the car was actually quite peaceful. You can just point the car in the right direction, put on the cruise control, and appreciate the vast open spaces in every direction. The weather was mild and sunny and there was no traffic to worry about. I do however have a confession to make. I was lost in thought and not paying attention to the speedometer. One mile from home I got stopped in downtown Chamberlain going 25 in a 20 mph zone. I always warn visitors that our police in town are very vigilant about the speed limit. Even though 20 seems like you’re crawling after the 75 m.p.h. interstate speed, you need to be careful on the road to visit us.

Along the way I stopped for a bite to eat and ran into the mom of two former students waiting tables – a nice chance to catch up on how they‘re doing. The whole state of South Dakota is like a vast small town, with connections and relationships all along the way.

I ended the day with supper at Sheehy Home (high school boys). Three of the students are in track and one is in soccer. This week begins their 4th quarter, so the stress of midterms are past and everyone has a clean slate of homework and missing assignments. I checked on some of their class projects and presentations and encouraged them to keep focused and keep up with the daily work. When you can do that it sure lessens the stress at the end of the quarter.

Author: St. Joseph's Indian School

At St. Joseph's Indian School, our privately-funded programs for Lakota (Sioux) children in need have evolved over 90 years of family partnership, experience and education. Because of generous friends who share tax-deductible donations, Native American youth receive a safe, stable home life; individual counseling and guidance; carefully planned curriculum based on Lakota culture and individual student needs and tools to help build confidence, boost self-esteem and improve cultural awareness. All of this helps children to live a bright, productive, possibility-filled future.

3 thoughts on “A confession to make”

  1. Okay, Father :Goobergobber”..how much was your ticket…?
    I will tell you a better one..our daughter was here for a visit and made the same mistake. The cop asked her her name. She said, “Mary Jane Escobar”. That’s Marijuana Escobar, you know. Then he asked her, “And I suppose your husband is “Pablo’..And , in fact, it is !..He let her off with a warning, but he checked her license, first , to see if she was telling the truth.
    You see, you are not in bad company..!
    Prayers and Hugs..
    Mia and Bob

  2. You were only going 5 miles over the speed limit-I’m surprised they stopped you for that.I hope you only got a warning.
    I’m always in awe at the amount of work you get in in one day.God will surely bless you for your faithful service. I hope it’s warming up a bit after the cold,snowy winter you’ve had.Spring is my favorite season.God bless!

  3. Well, it has probably happened to us all — I’ve also gotten a ticket for 5 miles over the limit.

    I love the rare opportunities that come along to take a nice long ride. I’m almost jealous Fr. Steve!

    I had wanted to comment on the previous blog for 3-14-11 but was not able to get in to make a comment, so I’ll add it here: What a great expression of what St. Joseph’s provides to the lives of their students that a student now away at college knew she would be welcome in if she needed shelter! St. Joseph’s is a second home to those who have been enrolled there. Well Done!

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