The Quest Never Loses Its Savor 

Who was this young student-sister whose final essay in English comp at Rosary College she titled “The Image of Man in Western Civilization” (Sister Julie said, “Let Christopher Dawson do this.”) And whose final paper for her MA she titled “Man in Search.” (inclusive language had not yet been invented.)


It could only be the daughter of a mother and father, Third Order Dominicans, whose daily reading as she grew up was publications like AmericaCommonwealIntegrity, and The Catholic Worker. Not that I understood a word of it–though I did try, once…


But I did catch the Dominican quest-bug, even as we children crouched near the radio for “Nick Carter Master Detective” and “The Shadow” while our parents went off on Sunday afternoons to Marquette Poetry Teas and meetings of the Thomist Association they started for the theological education of laity.


Thus, I found myself, three years after my sister Monica, joining the Sisters at Sinsinawa, the very group whose broad education at Rosary and Fribourg had so inspired my mother with love of life and learning. And even though I got a D in my first semester of Theology that year as a postulant, the Dominican “search for truth” caught on deeply.


So here I am, sixty-some years later and still on the exciting and ever-evolving quest for the good, the true, and the beautiful. Whether the books are Caste by Isabel Wilkerson, or the poetry of Mary Oliver, or The Rebirthing of God by John Phillip Newell, the quest never loses its savor.


We love these words and quote them often, given to us by Kaye Ashe:


The search—

for self,

for wisdom,

for love,

for truth, 

for justice,

for God—

is strenuous and unending.

We need good companions

in order to persevere in it.

In good company,

in a community of conviction,

the quest never loses its relevance,

its urgency,

or its savor.  


Miriam Brown, OP