The Red Skirt: Memoirs of an Ex Nun

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Overview

**2011 GLOBAL E-BOOK AWARD WINNER** A nine-year-old girl, impressionistic and dreamy, feels God has called to her through the voice of a missionary who speaks to her Catholic school class. The idea of this calling embeds itself deep within her, haunting her, and urging her to, ultimately, enter the convent. The Red Skirt: Memoirs of An Ex Nun is the very personal account of this young woman’s journey to find the place where she belongs. Sad as well as joyous, inspiring as well as unsettling, we follow her story through the five years she spends ...
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Overview

**2011 GLOBAL E-BOOK AWARD WINNER** A nine-year-old girl, impressionistic and dreamy, feels God has called to her through the voice of a missionary who speaks to her Catholic school class. The idea of this calling embeds itself deep within her, haunting her, and urging her to, ultimately, enter the convent. The Red Skirt: Memoirs of An Ex Nun is the very personal account of this young woman’s journey to find the place where she belongs. Sad as well as joyous, inspiring as well as unsettling, we follow her story through the five years she spends as an Adrian Dominican nun; as she tries to balance her desire for a secular life with her great fear of turning her back on God's call.
Poignant and insightful, The Red Skirt gives an unflinching glimpse of one woman’s internal, and decidedly human, struggle to leave behind the young, fearful girl who could not shake the words of the missionary, to become a strong woman who can accept an alternative spiritual philosophy, and, consequently, her place in the world.
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Just out of high school, O'Donnell-Gibson was received as a postulant to the Roman Catholic Dominican Sisters of Adrian, Mich., moving from a sheltered suburban childhood to the equally sheltered campus of Siena Heights University. Thoug the distance in miles was short, the convent might have been located in another universe. Having been raised in a devout Roman Catholic family and educated at a strict girls-only school, she nevertheless experienced a painful transition to religious life in the early 1960s. In this troubling coming-of-age memoir, O'Donnell-Gibson describes surreal, identity-erasing spiritual processing: nuns censoring her mail, searching her belongings, chaperoning her on family visits, giving ambiguous but dire warnings about sex. O'Donnell-Gibson is an adroit writer; her accounts of being terrified to turn her back on God and moved to rapture while singing psalms, for example, will keep readers committed to her story as she travels from the convent to Joliet, Ill., where she taught at a Roman Catholic elementary school. Given her own room, more freedom, and students to worry about, in 1968 she chose the "red skirt" (a symbol of worldly abandon), gave notice, and rode off into the night—and secular society—in her sister's Karmann Ghia. Despite many touching reflections, her insights rarely plumb the deepest levels, suggesting that she has not fully digested her past.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780983611202
  • Publisher: StuartRose Publishing, LLC
  • Publication date: 7/29/2011
  • Pages: 349
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.40 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

Patricia O’Donnell-Gibson is the author of The Red Skirt, Memoirs of an Ex Nun, which will be published this June. A teacher of English and Literature for 30 years, Patricia honed her skills and knowledge with a Masters in Arts degree in 1992.

In June and July of ‘96’, she attended the Third Coast Writing Project at Western Michigan University. The Institute, comprised of students who were classroom teachers, convened every day from 9 in the morning till 4 in the afternoon for a month. During these days Patricia studied current theory and research in the teaching of writing, she kept a notebook and wrote often, she learned how to effectively respond to the writing of others in her core writing group, and eventually, developed a lesson using many of the best teaching practices she studied and experienced that summer. After that class, she always kept a notebook, and she required that all of her high school students write in a notebook at least 2 or 3 times a week. The idea that writing was a craft, which became better with practice, was revealed to her over and over. This class, and the one that followed in 2000, called The Way Advanced Institute, changed her view of herself as a writer.

Patricia retired in June of 2002 and was happy to find that she now had time to write in earnest. During that first year of retirement, she began work on The Red Skirt, Memoirs of an Ex Nun. Eight years later, after several rounds of revisions and rewrites, of additions and subtractions, she is ready to hold her book in her hands. She lives in Watervliet, MI. on beautiful Paw Paw Lake with her husband and two cats.

Patricia had a poem published in the “Language Arts Journal of Michigan” in their Fall ‘97’ issue. She also had a poem published in the “Michigan Reading Journal” in the Summer ‘98’ issue.



She is a member of the Author’s Committee for the Dowagiac Dogwood Fine Arts Festival.
She serves as book club advisor for the Ladies of the Lake book club on Paw Paw Lake.





Patricia has a large family – she and her husband Lou have seven children between them, and thirteen grandchildren. Summers are busy with , and she wouldn’t have it any other way. She enjoys reading, working in her garden, watching the birds at her feeders, playing bridge each week and writing in her journal in
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 8 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Posted June 28, 2012

    This is the best book I've read in a long time. As a former Cat

    This is the best book I've read in a long time. As a former Catholic school girl, I can relate to so many of her feelings and experiences. Her story is honest, interesting, funny, and beautiful. I have recommended this book to many friends and relatives.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 15, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

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