THE INSPIRED work of Sister Miriam Stadulis, who for nearly a quarter century has brought light and love to a traditionally seedy part of Wilkes-Barre, cannot be fully conveyed in a single speech or editorial.
In about a dozen words, however, the ever-insightful Monsignor Joseph Kelly, of Catholic Social Services, recently delivered perhaps as fine a tribute as one could give upon the nun's pending retirement. She's been able to do so much with so little for so many, he said.
To that, we can only add, Amen.
As the founder and longtime director of the McGlynn Learning Center, serving low-income children and their families at the Boulevard Townhomes community, Stadulis has been mentor and life coach. Drug-prevention specialist and disciplinarian. Caretaker, comforter and confidant. Advocate and teacher.
Keeper of rainbows.
At month's end, Stadulis, 76, will step away from the center, entrusting it to … well, the rest of us.
Its mission will continue under the leadership of Sister Eleace King, 66. But the McGlynn Learning Center and its sister program at the Mineral Springs Complex also require the continued support of the Sisters of Mercy, the Wilkes-Barre Housing Authority, private donors and volunteers – lots of volunteers willing to assist with its after-school homework and tutoring program and other activities.
Hopefully, that important point – the need for perpetual involvement on the part of caring people – won't go unmentioned at upcoming events during which Stadulis receives well-deserved accolades. The Greater Wilkes-Barre Family YMCA plans to honor her service Wednesday.
Her steadfast effort day after day, year after year, sets the example for those who will follow, who will maintain the learning center as an oasis of safety and stability for at-risk youths. It's not enough to simply subscribe to the belief, as posted on the learning center's wall, that children are the rainbows of our lives.
If you truly aim to steer area children clear of violence, discourage bad life choices, champion the pursuit of education as a pathway to success, then you first need to dare do what Nanticoke native Miriam Stadulis did all those years ago.
You need to show up and help.
• Visit the McGlynn Learning Center's website: www.mcglynncenter.com.
• Call 824-8891.