Chapter is a Verb

Chapter is a Verb

Sister Mary Jo Radey, CSJBY SISTER PAULINE LALLY In the midst of this never-ending pandemic, we held a pre-chapter retreat in October.  The highlight for me was that we were able to get together.  To see each other, to talk to each other, to share meals and laughter once again.  After how many months?  It seemed like a hundred. However, it was a serious affair as well.  This Chapter will be about transforming ourselves into a new reality in a...

Providence Associates Retreat 2021

Providence Associates Retreat 2021

Brenda Peddigrew, RSM facilitating the 2019 Chapter of the Sisters of Providence of St. Vincent de Paul.BY REGINA LANNON, PROVIDENCE ASSOCIATE In a cosmic moment in early October, 30 Providence Associates and 3 Sisters of Providence gathered via Zoom from our own homes to spend Friday evening and Saturday with Sr. Brenda Peddigrew, RSM, as retreat director once again. We were in the season of Creation, on the cusp of the feast day of Francis of...

St. Vincent de Paul Hospital Time Capsules

St. Vincent de Paul Hospital Time Capsules

BY VERONICA STIENBURG, ARCHIVIST St. Vincent de Paul Hospital Brockville was opened in 1887 and five years later, in 1892, the hospital had outgrown its Schofield Hill location and the hospital moved to a former convent at 42 Garden Street. Over time several additions were built in 1896, 1912, 1924, and 1948. In 1958 a new four storey wing was added and in 1968, the old wings were demolished and replaced with a four-storey addition, which...

Sisters of Providence of St. Vincent de Paul Community Impact Fund

Sisters of Providence of St. Vincent de Paul Community Impact Fund

It was with both gratitude and excitement, shared by everyone present, that Community Foundation for Kingston & Area (CFKA) board members Rob Wood (Chair) and Gayle Barr (Past Chair) met with several Sisters of Providence of St. Vincent de Paul at Providence Motherhouse to receive their change-making $5 million gift to the community.

Celebrating the National Day of Truth and Reconciliation

Celebrating the National Day of Truth and Reconciliation

On September 30, the first National Day for Truth and Reconciliation, we chose to bring into our liturgical celebration elements of the culture and ritual of our indigenous brothers and sisters as a way of honouring their traditions. It was also a way of showing our sorrow and acknowledgment of the denigration of these traditions by our ancestors and members of our church.

Maria Konopeskas, Providence Associate

We received some very sad news recently. As you know, the Providence Associate Committee established a Life Time Membership for those people who have lived the charism and the spirituality of the Sisters of Providence of St. Vincent de Paul for many years and who are not able to renew their commitment because of physical or cognitive limits. Maria Konopeskas made her commitment in 1991. She has been a faithful Associate for 30 years. Maria had...

Sisters Vote!

Sisters Vote!

Kingston and the Islands riding election debate for 2005 Canadian Federal Election.BY VERONICA STIENBURG, ARCHIVIST In light of the recent federal election, let’s take a look at the Sisters of Providence’s history of voting in federal elections. After obtaining suffrage in 1919, the first Canadian federal election in which women could exercise their right to vote was 1921. The congregation was unsure at first whether to let the Sisters exercise...

Missionary Returns to Canada

Missionary Returns to Canada

54 years of service in Latin AmericaBY SISTER GAYLE DESARMIA In 1967 when the Sisters of Providence of St. Vincent de Paul were opening missions in Guatemala and Peru, Sister Rose-Marie Bokenfohr (photo at right), a registered nurse, was among the first group of Sisters to volunteer for mission work. After attending language school in Puerto Rico, she spent her first two years in Guatemala. In 1969, she moved to Peru where she was engaged in...

Raphael Lake…The Lake That Wasn’t

Raphael Lake…The Lake That Wasn’t

Sister Mary Raphael is noteworthy on several fronts. She was especially well known for her 42 years of service at Providence Hospital in Moose Jaw and was much beloved by the people of Moose Jaw. She was also the first Sister of Providence of St. Vincent de Paul to reach the age of 100. Sister Mary Raphael was born in 1877 and died at the ripe old age of 102 in 1979. And she is the only Sister of Providence who almost had a lake named after her!

Water troubles!

Water troubles!

BY VERONICA STIENBURG, ARCHIVIST Those of us who live in cities, take for granted that our water is provided by the city and not by a private corporation. This was not always the case in Kingston. According to the Kingston Pumphouse Museum website, the Kingston Water Works was owned by a private corporation from 1849 to 1887 when it was purchased by the City of Kingston. In 1889 the City replaced half of the pipes in Kingston with larger pipes...

Called to be ICONS of Providence

Called to be ICONS of Providence

BY SISTER JEANNETTE FILTHAUT The week after the 2021 Providence Event, Sister Jeannette interviewed several participants and correlated their responses. First time participants who were interviewed included Bridget Doherty and Jeremy Milloy from our JPIC Office and Beverly Koski, Providence Associate. Other participants interviewed were Regina Lannon, Providence Associate and Sister Gayle Desarmia from the Leadership Team. First time...

Providence ­– Where Justice and Radical Hope Meet

Providence ­– Where Justice and Radical Hope Meet

BY SISTER PAULINE LALLY A good thing – no, a very good thing - happened 40 years ago and we Sisters of Providence and Associates from two nations and thirteen different Providence congregations honoured “that very good thing” on the 3rd Saturday of February, 2021. The beginning of the Women of Providence in Collaboration. And the pandemic didn’t stop us. Thanks to amazing technology and its technicians we did it virtually. In a beautiful...

Protecting physical, mental & spiritual health during the COVID-19 Pandemic

Protecting physical, mental & spiritual health during the COVID-19 Pandemic

Sisters playing BINGO. From left: Sister Irene Wilson, SP, Sister Mary Cockburn, CND, and Sister Judith Ann Murphy, SP.BY MICHAEL HAMMOND, COMMUNICATIONS OFFICER In January of 2020 an Infection, Prevention and Control Team (IPCT) was established to plan for the case of outbreaks, especially of the seasonal flu, at Providence Motherhouse. The role of the IPCT is to identify and reduce the risks of infections and restrict the exposure to the...

Providence Hospital School of Nursing, Moose Jaw

Providence Hospital School of Nursing, Moose Jaw

BY VERONICA STIENBURG, ARCHIVIST The School of Nursing at Providence Hospital in Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan was founded in 1917 by Sister Mary Raphael McCann. There were 14 students in the first class. Conditions were crowded and instruction was carried on by the doctors as they went about visiting their patients. The following September, when the new hospital opened on Lillooet Street, classrooms were on the ground floor and living accommodation...

History of the St. Vincent de Paul Hospital in Brockville Ontario

History of the St. Vincent de Paul Hospital in Brockville Ontario

In December 2020 the Sisters of Providence transferred the former St. Vincent de Paul Hospital site in Brockville to the Marguerita Residence Corporation to be repurposed as affordable housing for seniors. St. Vincent de Paul Hospital was the first hospital founded by the Sisters of Providence and marks their entry into institutional health care.

A Lenten Letter

A Lenten Letter

BY VERONICA STIENBURG, ARCHIVIST Mother Mary Clement was General Superior from July 1927 to July 1930. She wrote a letter to all the Sisters for Lent in 1930 that was sent to all the convents and missions. Here are a few extracts: Dear Sister Superior and Sisters:- I notice that all the Sisters are writing to their loved ones, so I thought I would do like-wise. For many reasons, my letter must be short, and for this, I know you will pardon me....

Transfer of St. Vincent de Paul Hospital

Transfer of St. Vincent de Paul Hospital

The transfer of ownership papers being signed by Sister Sandra Shannon, General Superior, and Sister Barbara Thiffault, General Secretary on October 27, 2020.The Sisters of Providence have always helped the most vulnerable in our communities by addressing the needs of the times. The St. Vincent de Paul Hospital, which had in the past been leased to Brockville General Hospital, found new purpose in a plan to fill an unmet need in the Brockville...

Providence Associates Plan for an Autonomous Future

Providence Associates Plan for an Autonomous Future

From left: Barbara Baker, Ann Boniferro, Laraine Corbin, and Bridget Doherty.BY BARBARA BAKER, PROVIDENCE ASSOCIATES DIRECTOR The Providence Associates have known since 2018 that sometime in the future we would need to move away from our dependence on the Sisters of Providence of St. Vincent de Paul. At our AGEM that year, Sister Frances O’Brien facilitated our gathering as we talked about possibilities for an autonomous future. At that time,...

Dating Architectural Photographs

Dating Architectural Photographs

BY VERONICA STIENBURG, ARCHIVIST Many photographs in the Archives do not have dates, but we can try to use clues in the photographs themselves to establish a date range. I can often narrow down the dates of photographs of Sisters based on what type of habit the Sisters in the photograph are wearing, but this process of using clues in the photographs also works with buildings. When I look at photographs of buildings, I look for architectural...

Teaching in Peru during the pandemic

Teaching in Peru during the pandemic

BY CARMEN ALOMÍA GUÍA, PROVIDENCE ASSOCIATE Carmen Alomía Guía is the Coordinator of the Providence Associates in Peru. She teaches Spanish language and literature at a high school in El Progreso, Carabayllo.  Here in Peru the situation is complicated. I think the government is making the right decisions, but the big problem is poverty, the lack of respect for the rules by the citizens and our poor health system, which is not prepared to deal...