The Tears I Couldn't Cry: Behind Convent Doors

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AuthorHouse, Apr 16, 2009 - Family & Relationships - 308 pages

Walk in my shoes as a Sister in a religious order in the United States from 1955-78. Do what I did. Feel what I felt. Live the life I lived in utmost secrecy.

Pats incredible story takes readers on a terrifying journey through 22 years of convent life in 20th century America. Promised to God when she was dying at age 3, she eventually enters a Catholic order of women where she is controlled by rigid rules and must wear a cumbersome 17th century habit looking like a flying nun. During 3 years of formation she is stripped of her own identity and forced into a mold. She must give up the family she loves, while her Superiors squash her passion for art, music, and nature.

She must live under vows that require blind obedience, no pay for her work, and untainted celibacy. All of these sacrifices are demanded in Gods all-justifying Name. Leaving the convent would be turning her back on God and risking eternal damnation, Superiors say.

After reading Pats true story, readers are faced with a question: Was Pat, and thousands of other women like her, abused by the very religion they loved?

Emmy-award winning screenwriter and one of Pats mentors, Vickie Patik, says, THE TEARS I COULDNT CRY is a triumph of the human spirit and an inspiration to anyone who is working up the courage to question cherished beliefs and seek closure through honest reflection and self-healing.

Barnaby Conrad, co-founder of the Santa Barbara Writers Conference and its co-director for 33 years says that Pat has written her story that is terrifying and beautiful and VERY moving.


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About the author (2009)

Following her years as a Sister, Pat Grueninger-Beasley settled in North Carolina, where she took a temporary position with the North Carolina Job Service, before the late Louise Wilson hired her as Counselor/Coordinator of the Experiment in Self-Reliance’s high school drop-out program for low-income young people.

Eventually, she became a Human Relations Specialist for the City of Winston-Salem and was elected vice-president, then president, of the North Carolina chapter of NAHRW (National Association of Human Rights Workers).

In 1988, Pat married Karl Beasley and settled in the magnificent Southwest. She returned to teaching and commuted between Magdalena and the Alamo Navajo Indian Reservation School, followed by a teaching stint at the local public school.

After retiring from teaching, Pat became a freelance writer for a county newspaper and an author.

Pat lives with her husband in Magdalena, New Mexico, where she delights in nature’s beauty and cares for animals. She treasures her bonds with the Navajo and Apache Indians of the nearby reservation.

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