Associate Profile: Cynthia Bowling

Cynthia Bowling: Corn Queen

Association Director Peggy Maguire, CSJA introduces
the "Corn Queen" Cynthia Bowling, CSJA

Meet CSJ Associate Cynthia Bowling, known for her joyful enthusiasm and her legendary canned corn collection! Read about her motivations for becoming an associate and her thoughts on creating a peaceful world.

What was your motivation to join the CSJ Associates?
Sister Ann Pace, my high school French teacher, talked to me about it and thought I would enjoy it and be an asset. I trust S. Ann's judgment and started right away. Once I met Peggy Maguire, I knew it was a perfect fit. Formation was wonderful. 

What would you say has been the most rewarding time during your service as an associate?
Hands down, it is the moment I read my statement at my original commitment ceremony. My voice broke on the last word and tears streamed down my cheeks. At first I was worried I was having a panic attack, but it was quite the opposite. A calm and peace washed over me and I had never felt so happy or alive. It was a feeling I had never felt before, but now feel virtually every single day.

What is your favorite ministry?
No contest here. Working with Associates Anne and Tom Clifford to collect corn each year for St. Augustine's. I make it a contest and have a great time collecting and trying to beat the previous year.

What experiences shaped you most as a person of God?
Growing up Catholic, in a Catholic neighborhood, attending Catholic school for 12 years, and playing CYC sports through my twenties.

Who do you look up to and why?
St. John Paul II and Pope Francis. Both bring such charisma to the Church. I was fortunate enough to see Pope John Paul II when he was here in St. Louis. I attended his Mass and received his blessing. It was the greatest moment in my life.

I think Pope Francis has raised the bar and is going to take the Catholic Church to places no one would have ever imagined possible. He will bring many back to the Church during his time as pope. It is a very wonderful and special time to be a Catholic.

What would you say is the most important societal or worldly problem we face? Why?
There is too much hate in the world today. Hates lead to killing and a multitude of other bad things. People need to learn to work together and to get along regardless of race, color, creed or sexual orientation. We are all one in God's eyes. It is time everyone stepped up and put forth the extra effort to make the world more peaceful and loving.

If you could address all of the people in the world what would you say?
Get back to basics: faith and family. Stop hating and being so materialistic. Pray and pray often. God will do the rest.

What do you like to do in your spare time?
Gardening, yarn work, reading.

What is the last thing you do before you go to sleep?

What was your favorite subject in school?
English and learning French

Where have you traveled? If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be?
I have traveled all over the United States and Cancun, Mexico. I would most likely stay here in St. Louis. It is home.

What is your favorite movie and book?
My favorite movie is Major League. My favorite book is And Ladies of the Club, by Helen Hooven Santmeyer


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