National Catholic Reporter
February 2, 2021
By Sahm Venter
The young mother wrapped her baby son in a shawl and carefully pushed a letter to his adoptive parents into a bag stuffed with toys, sweaters and other clothes.
“I lifted him from the nursery, walked up the corridor and handed him to a nun and that was the last I’d seen of him for 40 years,” said Adele, who asked to use a pseudonym because of the sensitive nature of her story.
She said that at the age of 18, she had been “shipped off” to the Good Shepherd Sisters’ Marianvale Mother and Baby Home in Newry in Northern Ireland.
What struck her immediately as she walked in was the smell of lavender wood polish. She still associates it with the trauma of having to give up her name, and her baby, and of being made to perform Irish dances for the nuns with a group of pregnant women and girls.
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