Texas nun and 39-year Rangers fan

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Friday 28, October 2011 | Category:   Vocation and Discernment,Consecrated Life
and her longtime friend
Sister Maggie Hession
with Nolan Ryan when
he pitched for the Rangers.

Describing herself as a tomboy who grew up in Temple, Texas playing baseball and football with boys, Sister Frances Evans has been a Texas Rangers fan ever since the team originated as one of the reincarnations of the old Washington Senators. She was at the Rangers’ opening game in 1972 and recently she attended the fifth game of this year’s World Series in Arlington (in row 14, behind home plate). “We got to know [Rangers' owner] Nolan [Ryan] when he was playing ball for us,” she said in an interview with the Los Angeles Times. “When they built the new stadium, they asked us to be the first ones through the turnstile. Baseball’s been so good to us.”

Talking about her background, she had a few observations about her vocation. “I was a convert. I worked six years in Santa Rosa Hospital in San Antonio in the lab. There was something different about the sisters. The only thing I can think is, God just shook me by the neck and said, ‘This is what you’re going to do.’ In 1950 I entered convent in San Antonio, the Sisters of Charity of the Incarnate Word.”

Did they wear habits back then? “We sure did! We wore habits for a long time.” Could they go to baseball games? “Not back then, you didn’t go much of anywhere. I worked in the hospital most of the time. I don’t think we even had television when I entered.

“I was stationed here in Fort Worth in 1967,” she said. “It was beginning to lighten up a bit here and there. I remember well when they went to the shorter skirts and I walked out of chapel and felt the breeze on my knees. I never knew how good that would feel.”

See another profile of the sisters in the Wall Street Journal.

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