Story by Anna Kenney ‘19

For the Class of 2019 the days are numbered, but they still have several opportunities to celebrate their class before graduation. One of these special traditions is May Crowning. Not only does May Crowning honor a member of the senior class, but it also brings the whole Marian community together to honor Mary and to gather in faith.

May Crowning has been a tradition for many years, but it was not even an official alumnae event until 2006. Mrs. Nancy Casey ‘82, Alumnae Director, has been involved with May Crowning since she started working here in 2008. “May Crowning has become something that alumnae look forward to with their daughters,” Casey said.

Alumnae mothers and grandmothers who have a daughter/granddaughter who is a second grader making her First Communion are welcome to come for a fun day at Marian. The second graders are given white roses to carry in the May Crowning ceremony, and afterwards they have a cupcake reception.

From the gathering of the entire student body to the singing of the “Ave Maria,” and to the procession of the second graders in their First Communion dresses, May Crowning lives in the hearts of Marian alums for years after their graduate. The senior class chooses one of their peers who demonstrates a deep sense of faith as their May Queen.

“I trust our senior class to choose who they feel is a great May Queen to represent the class,” Liturgical Minister Mrs. Anna Kolterman ’94 said. “They always do a great job in the selection process and that is true for this year.” Senior Sarah Anderson was not only chosen as the 2019 Prom Queen but also as this year’s May Queen.

“I think Sarah is perfect for May Queen, because she always puts others first and you never see her being negative,” senior Maria Kleinsmith said. “She shows up everywhere with a smile and I think it helps others be better, seeing her give off such a positive attitude.”

“She is a role model in the Marian community who lives out her faith by leading by example, serving others and sharing her gifts and talents,” senior Carolyn Griffin said.

“It is a huge honor and I am so lucky to have classmates that motivate me to do my best,” Anderson said. Anderson is planning to attend the College of St. Mary next year where she will be playing soccer and studying biology.

This past Tuesday, Anderson had the honor of crowning Mary in the gym. Even though the location was different because of construction on campus, the ceremony was no less beautiful and moving. Senior Mia McGrath agrees that Anderson is the perfect choice for May Queen. “She is the most kind, loving and genuine person I know, with a faith life that knows no bounds,” McGrath said. Anderson and McGrath have been friends since they used to walk home from grade school together. McGrath introduced Anderson as the May Queen with a touching speech at the beginning of the ceremony.

The May Crowning ceremony helped solidify the Marian community in faith. “Each young woman who is educated in the Servite tradition at Marian is in formation to live Marian Identity as she goes forth into the world,” Kolterman said. “The tradition of May Crowning at the conclusion of the year, highlights that core value, as the selected May Queen speaks to the whole student body on the topic of living like Mary.”

Anderson addressed the student body with a moving speech in which she reflected on Mary. She also focused on being a disciple by doing good works every day. “If you try your best in all that you do, whether it is or isn’t your best, doesn’t matter,” Anderson said. “The fact that you tried will always be good enough.”

Anderson was a witness of a strong faith as this year’s May Queen. Her inspiring words encouraged the student body. “When things get out of hand, let God take control,” Anderson said. “Be strong in your faith, stand up for what you believe in and have a heart of gold.” Although many students hope that May Crowning goes outside next spring, the tradition will continue.