Sister Mary Xavier taught all subjects during her long teaching career, but mathematics and science were her passion. She mentored boys who showed promise in these disciplines and frequently visited the Montana State School of Mines and the mines in and around Butte to learn how to apply mathematics to mining. “Sister Zave,” as she was known, was driven by her own curiosity and her concern for her students’ welfare. Her biography states, “She wanted to know what the mining involved, what skills were needed to take her boys out of the underground diggings, and what ones were necessary to make life safer in the mines.”
Sister Mary Xavier’s appreciation of education at Creighton shines in a reflection she wrote on the occasion of her graduation.
Again in the joyful Easter season of 1915, Sister Mary Syra sent me the sweetest kind of greeting – one that sinks deeply into the soul and lives there. There was also a message from Mother about my going to Creighton. Having heard during the previous winter months such things about the work at Creighton that delight the ear and captivate the fancy, I saw in the message the realization of a hope long cherished. With the buoyancy of youth and the fervor of desire, I unhesitantly accepted the most precious gift offered me, and thanked from the inmost depths of my heart, the one who so graciously bestowed it.
[At Creighton] I was harder to please than any of the Sisters who had preceded me. I wanted to take chemistry from the eminent Dr. Crowley, but fate hitherto so kind had deserted me there. I was alone in the request and so doomed to enroll elsewhere.
[An] interesting session was Father Quinlan’s trigonometry. I found more pleasure in attending his classes than driving in an auto when summer is vibrant with the fragrance of flowers. It was a delightful recreation to see him unfold the intricacies of the web and expose to view very thread.
 “Sister Mary Xavier Davey [Biography],” undated. Sister Mary Xavier Davey File. Sisters of Charity of Leavenworth Archives. Leavenworth, Kansas.
 Sisters of Charity of Leavenworth Chronicle, Vol. 4, 730-732. Sisters of Charity of Leavenworth Archives, Leavenworth, Kansas.