Sister Elaine Burke recalls Christmas in New Mexico

We continue our celebration of Advent 2023 with “The Gift of Christmas.” The Ursuline Sisters were asked to recall a special Christmas gift they gave or received; a memory of their ministry during Christmas, such as planning an event with their students; or a favorite Christmas ornament they loved.

Our next memory is from Sister Elaine Burke, who served in New Mexico from 1983-91.

“In 1990 I was missioned in Grants, N.M., as the director of Religious Education. I also taught music in St. Teresa Catholic School to all the students.

“I took it upon myself to present the musical, ‘Christmas Time.’ Each class took part in the play – some were angels, shepherds, kings, and Mary and Joseph. All the school participated in the singing, especially the 5th, 6th, 7th and 8th grades. It was the typical Christmas story. The children were dressed in red and black. Needless to say, the parents, grandparents and other relatives filled the hall to overflowing. The children performed to perfection.

“That took place 33 years ago, and I can still see those angelic faces as if it were yesterday. It is a memory I will never forget.”



  1. Theresa Payne

    Thank you for sharing. Our son one year (elementary school) was a tree, he wasn’t supposed to move, his sneeze gave him away, Like you, memories for a lifetime.

  2. Suzanne Sims

    The pictures to go with the story of such a nice way for families to come together around the real meaning of Christmas. I bet that they still recall the Christmas plays, too. Thank you.

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