TICONDEROGA - Old friends and teachers still can't believe it. Sharon Dalton is a nun.
In fact, Sister Sharon will mark her 40th anniversary as a sister of St. Joseph this week.
The long-time principal of St. Mary's School in Ticonderoga will be honored by the parish and school during the 11 a.m. Mass at St. Mary's Church Sunday, Oct. 25. A reception will follow noon to 3 p.m. in the St. Mary's School gym. All are invited.
"When I was in school, every year the sisters would pick out three or four girls and let them try on habits, it was a way of creating some interest in the religious life," Dalton recalled. "I was never picked. Years later when I'd see my old principal she'd say, 'I still don't believe it, Sharon.'"
Neither does Dalton. Growing up in Watertown, she attended Catholic school but never considered religious life - "I wasn't the type; I liked to have fun," she smiled.
Dalton still likes to have fun, but things changed her senior year in high school. She decided to attend Mater Dei College in Ogdensburg and become a nun.
Things then took another turn. She left the religious life and went to college to study business.
"I had a lot of options, things I could have done with a business degree," Dalton said, "but somehow I was drawn back to the religious life."
So she returned to school again, this time at Villa Maria in Pennsylvania, to earn a degree in early childhood education and took her final vows as a nun in 1968.
Her first assignment was as an elementary school teacher in Morristown, near Ogdensburg. In 1979 she was named principal at St. Augustine's School in Peru and six years later became principal at St. Mary's School in Ticonderoga.