Even someone whose life is focused on the spiritual can feel abandoned sometimes.

Sister of St. Joseph JudithAnn Loschiavo, 54, has been a nun for 31 years. She has taught first grade at St. Joseph Regional School in Somers Point for 19 of those years, she said.

But when her parents both died, and then she lost Sister Virginia Cleary, a nun she had lived and worked with for much of her career, it was almost too much.

“I don’t have the same connection like a husband, wife and children would have, if there was a loss,” she said. “I was feeling alone and abandoned.”

It all came to a head last year, she said. After prayer, reflection and retreat experiences, “I took the whole experience of loss and grief ... and one day in October got this unbelievable urge to sit down and write,” she said.

The singer-songwriter already had recorded three CDs as fundraisers for her school. She called her friend Kit Worton, of Right Touch Studios in Northfield. He wrote the music to her lyrics, she said, and the result is her latest CD, “New Beginnings.”

One song is based on the mantra her father repeated during the last six days of his life in hospice, she said. The words were, “Jesus, hear my prayer.”

“From the time he began his journey, he prayed continuously,” she said, and Loschiavo and her sister prayed those words with him.

“It was a six-day event, and the process of moving through that with him is what’s expressed in the song,” she said.

By the time she finished the writing, she felt healed.

“What happened was, through my music and writing, God was letting me know he was always there,” she said. “I was never alone.”

The CD is $15, benefits the school and the Sisters of St. Joseph in Philadelphia. It can be purchased at the school or parish office in Somers Point. Call 609-927-2228.

Holy Spirit yearbook honored

Holy Spirit High School’s yearbook, Spartan 2013, created by Editor Caitlin Randik, Megan Bottinio, Tori Light, Katie Bainbridge, Marina Poupart, Gianna Enriquez, Fiona Tran, Samantha Applegate, Emily Ferguson, Mike DiIanni and Rita Do with yearbook adviser Denise Lamanna, has been recognized for national excellence.

“The Spartan” is one of only 425 yearbooks selected from 3,000 to be featured in the 2013 Gotcha Covered Jostens Look Book, Volume 11, celebrating the best in yearbook design and coverage, the school said. This is the second consecutive year the Spartan has earned the honor.

Contact Michelle Brunetti Post:


Senior copy editor for the Press of Atlantic City. Have worked as a reporter, copy editor and news editor with the paper since 1985. A graduate of the University of Delaware.