“Will you support each of us so that we may discover the diversity of gifts within and among us, honor our uniqueness and liberty of spirit, and live the fullness of God’s beautiful plan for us to be women of faith, vision, and purpose in the Visitation tradition?” asked Sister Mary Berchmans, VHM, ‘48 & ‘50, Monastery Superior and President Emerita, on behalf of the students of Georgetown Visitation.
“I will,” pledged Dr. Barbara McGraw Edmondson as she was officially installed as Visitation’s new Head of School.
On Sunday, September 8, 2019, the Sisters of the Visitation, generations of alumnae from the 1940s to the 2010s, parents, faculty and staff, and, of course, students, gathered under clear blue skies to welcome Dr. Edmondson and celebrate this momentous occasion in Visitation’s history. Dr. Edmondson is the school’s first lay woman leader and only the eighth Head of the school since 1900.
Speaking directly to the young women in the audience, Dr. Edmondson, said, “Students, it has only been a week since you arrived on campus and I adore you already! I believe that I have been called to this place at this time; your presence and your incredible energy are a treasure. Be assured of my commitment to you. Whether a freshman finding her way or a senior just days from graduation, the traditions that are shared, the decisions that are made, and my interactions with you as we pass on campus or sit and talk in my office will serve one purpose -- to know you, to love you, and to guide and support you at this pivotal time your young life.”
The students, in turn, welcomed Dr. Edmondson with a hand-painted one-of-a-kind gold and white vase that reminds her that each student is made uniquely in God’s image even as they share an identity as women of Visitation.
Surrounded by hundreds of friends new and old, Dr. Edmondson looked toward the future with the words of a quintessential woman of faith, vision and purpose: Mother Teresa, “What you can do, we cannot do, and what we can do, you cannot do, but together we can do something beautiful.”