Cornelia Connelly’s Birthday- Ryan Arends ’25

Throughout my time at Oak Knoll, I’ve become more aware of the life of Cornelia Connelly, founder of the Society of the Holy Child Jesus. From projects to reading assignments, I’ve grown to learn her importance to our community. Growing up in Philadelphia and overcoming all the obstacles that came her way during her lifetime has led her to be a role model for many. Cornelia Connelly’s birthday is a well-anticipated day for the students here at Oak Knoll. January 15th brings students cupcakes and the Oak Knoll population together in prayer, but it is also important to remember that it is the day that Cornelia, our founder, was born. It is not just a celebration that brings us all together as a community, but it brings us together to our beloved founder. Through songs, readings, and reflections, our community is able to showcase the diversity of talents it holds while paying tribute to Cornelia. I remember experiencing my first time celebrating her birthday in seventh grade, and the sense of community and pride that filled Campion as we all sat and continued to sit together every year was unforgettable.