The Acton Institute lost a dear friend with the passing last week of Sr. Connie Driscoll, president of the Chicago-based St. Martin de Porres House of Hope, and a frequent lecturer at the Towards a Free and Virtuous Society conferences. Columnist Carol Marin of the Chicago Sun-Times described Sr. Connie as “the most unlikely nun I have ever seen: a black eye-patch-wearing, cigarillo smoking, Scotch-drinking sister. Though she had lost her left eye to a stroke, her good eye was glinty blue and fiercely focused on a mission that would guide the rest of her life and, along the way, rescue the lives of thousands of others.”
Rev. Robert Sirico, president of the Acton Institute, offered these words:
Sr. Connie, known and loved by an entire generation of Acton Institute seminar alumni, followed in a long line of disciples of Christ from the Good Samaritan in the first century, the nuns who invented hospitals in the Middle Ages, William Booth (founder of the Salvation Army) in the 19th century and Mother Francis Cabrini and Mother Teresa in our own age: fearless in serving the vulnerable, trusting in God to provide for the needs, and selfless in their dedication. No one will suggest Connie Driscoll’s canonization – but she is, in many ways, already canonized in the hearts of those she served and who loved her. Her entrepreneurial spirit was a healing inspiration to those who knew her, and I count it an honor to have been her friend.
I pray the ancient prayer for her repose:
“May the Angels lead you into Paradise; may the Martyrs receive you at your coming, and take you to Jerusalem the holy city. May the choirs of the Angels receive you, and may you, with the once poor Lazarus, have rest everlasting.”