St. Louis sisters, associates Adopt-A-Highway

A newly installed sign identifies the School Sisters of Notre Dame as the group responsible for cleaning the section of road between I-255 and Telegraph Road.In response to the Pope’s encyclical Laudato Si’, Sister Ruth Emke and Associate Anne Carey sought to make a positive impact on the environment around them. The two arranged for the adoption of two exits, both northbound and southbound from I-255 onto Telegraph Road in St. Louis, for three years.

“Keeping a small piece of public land cleared of trash could be one small way we can witness to this value,” they wrote in their appeal to sisters, associates and friends to join the Adopt-A-Highway program. The message was received, the adoption made and cleanup has begun. Plus, they said, the sign noting SSND’s assignment of those sections will be an inspiration for others to do the same.

Standing with trash they picked up Aug. 29 are (left to right): Sisters Joan DiProspere, Linda Kramer, Jean Greenwald, Fran Dotta, Susan Renner, Pat Gravemann, Ruth Emke and Celine Schumacher.The first cleanup took place in August, with nine participants; the next pickup is planned for Nov. 14.

Sister Ruth said, “It was a great morning. We all got a little exercise, picked up 29 bags of trash, four hub caps, one tire, a bucket and even a fishing pole! We had a positive impact on that small part of our earth.”

Adopt-A-Highway programs are available in all states, or if SSNDs have already adopted an area send a picture and a brief description for sharing to

Photo credits: Anne Carey, Associate

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