Providence Village is a community of hope, belonging and wellbeing for the vulnerable where diverse partners offer compassionate care and support services to honour and continue the spirit and Catholic legacy of the Sisters of Providence of St. Vincent de Paul. The construction phase has started and Sister Jeannette Filthaut reflects on it in this article. For updates on Providence Village go to www.providencevillage.ca.
BY SISTER JEANNETTE FILTHAUT
“For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven: a time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up what is planted…” (Ecclesiastes 3.1-2)
Arborists are presently moving forward with protection and removal of many of the trees that have blessed the grounds of the Providence Motherhouse and the neighbourhood, some for over a century. Before birds build their new nests, many trees are being removed to realize the benefits of Hospice and Providence Manor to be built for new residents… “there is a time!” Old growth trees that have heard many stories from our sisters, associates and retreatants are giving way to progress. Letting go of these trees is difficult for the sisters, staff and the neighbours of 1200 Princess Street. In this we are truly “forsaking the good in our quest for the best”.
While not equaling the mature trees lost, where one goes two will be replacing it with new life. “Because all creatures are connected, each must be cherished with love and respect, for all of us as living creatures are dependent on one another.” (Pope Francis in Laudato Si #42)
Change is necessary for new growth for future generations. The changes for Providence Village have been in a long planning process which involves others like Little Forests Kingston and Rotary Club when bringing carefully planned environmental efforts to the construction process.
“There is a time for everything – time for us to reconnect with the wonders of nature and to build positive relationships with the nature that surrounds us wherever we may live.” (Sister Jeannette Filthaut) We hope to continue doing this as Providence Village unfolds and brings forth new life. Thankfully, our Old Growth Oak tree will remain as the sentinel guarding this process, to bless the construction project and the Village for years to come.