Sadzi Oliva ASH '92
2018 Angel Brunch Speaker
Excerpt of Speech
"Good morning and congratulations to the Sheridan Road Class of 2018!... "Believe it or not, in this very room, I attended Angel Brunch 30 years ago with the Class of 1988...
"I spent a lot of time at Sheridan Road—I'm not only part of the Class of '88 but also the Class of '92, when there was still a high school! I have so many great memories of Sacred Heart: I remember Sister Munch's lambs every Advent that had a tiny little label with our names on each lamb ... students who misbehaved got their lambs moved—I thank God I was never moved to the back of the lamb line. I remember walking into school and seeing the pretty pink statue of St. Madeleine Sophie Barat and I remember goûter—the pink donuts on her feast day. I remember Congé, the 8th grade D.C. trip with Mrs. Stawicki and the First Ladies' Tea before it became the Notable Women's Project.... I still have my Sacred Heart passport which I've brought with me on every trip abroad I've ever taken.... Thirty years later, my elementary school memories are more vivid than my high school and college memories, and I'm sure they will be for you too....
"... I sincerely believe that the Sacred Heart Goals and Criteriainstilled in me year after year and lesson after lesson have led to my successes in life. It's also the Sacred Heart Goals and Criteriathat I instinctively rely on when I make decisions. My Sacred Heart education taught me humility, confidence, integrity, empathy and the value of public service.
"Class of 2018, listen very carefully and know that you are already prepared to be successful in high school and beyond—this fall you'll probably realize that you're more advanced in your studies than some of your new classmates thanks to Sacred Heart, that you're more well-rounded ... I don't remind you of this to boast or brag but to think about how this time at Sacred Heart has already prepared you for what is coming next.
"If you remember one thing about what I say this morning, I want it to be the words of St. Madeleine Sophie Barat: "Your example, even more than your words, will be an eloquent lesson to the world."... Be the example of exceptionalism, goodness, kindness, thoughtfulness, and gratitude. You will have many challenges in high school, and with each challenge you have a choice—do you want to be a good example or an example of what not to do? When you do make a mistake, because, let's face it, we all do ... don't think of it as a failure. Instead, think of how you can turn your mistake into a good example and valuable lesson. Each and every one of you, like each and every Sacred Heart alum out there in the world, is so fortunate to have this Sacred Heart foundation—wouldn't it be a shame to waste it? To let it go? When your new high school friends ask you what school you're from, say Sacred Heart with pride and know you are already a positive example to the world.
"And I have one more favor to ask ... report back to Sheridan Road on your achievements because they love hearing from you and you never know—maybe you'll end up giving the keynote speech 30 years from you when you realize that your successes stem directly from that simple lesson of St. Madeleine Sophie Barat that you learned at Sheridan Road. Thank you and all the best to the amazing Class of 2018!"