Thursday, July 31, 2014

Mother Joseph pilgrimage

Sister Karin took us to Laval, Mother Joseph's birthplace. It is right across the river from Montréal. The church Mother Joseph was baptized in is long gone, but the parish is still in existence, and the statue of Mary was there in her time. Nearby, an architect's office is housed in the building where little Esther Parizeau once went to school.


One of the most amazing things we learned about Mother Gamelin was the story depicted here. M. Gamelin, her husband, was set upon by robbers and was saved by Dodais, a deaf-mute boy who was also mildly retarded. When M. Gamelin died he asked Emilie to care for Dodais and this is why the SP's continue to have special ministries to the deaf and to the mentally ill. At one time, they had a mental hospital in Montréal that was so large it was its own town. The Sister Superior of Jean de Dieu was also mayor of the town. Five hundred sisters worked in that one hospital alone. It was taken over by the government in the sixties when the Québécois decided the Church had too much control over social services.

Msgr. Blanchet

It was amazing to see an original daguerrotype of Bishop A. M. A. Blanchet which we had never seen before.

More from the Archives

The Mother House is so enormous that there is almost unlimited space for the Archives. We looked at one of several exquisitely perfect volumes documenting all the properties of the Sisters from the beginning.  We also saw the chair Bishop Bourget sat in when he came to visit the sisters, and the desk of Mother Gamelin.

Touring the Archives

We had an amazing tour of the Archives here. They have a display of 50 paintings done by a sister in 1930 for a Canadian exposition on missionary work. Each painting is more charming than the last.

Chez les Soeurs de la Providence

Here we are at the International Centre of the Sisters of Providence. We each have our own room. (!) It's a beautiful residence. Here's the painting outside my room:

Many sisters live here and in the adjacent buildings. This sister's taste for artificial flowers and needlework has overflowed her room into the hall.

Mother Gamelin's tomb is here, just outside the Chapel in the Maison-Mère, the Motherhouse:

Inside the Chapel:

Electric lilies:

Outside the International Centre with our rental car, which is brand-new. We are the first renters of it. 

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

En route

Nous sommes en vacances. Nous allons à Montreal ou habitent les Canadiens francophones. Il faut parler en français maintenant. Donc, c'est très difficile s'exprimer.

Saturday, July 26, 2014

More baby pictures

Considering this is an old maid's blog, it sure has had a lot of baby pictures lately.  Today was the day for Peter Thomas's baptism.  As you may recall, we are godmothers to his darling sister Charlotte:

She and her old friend Ella looked rather wary on their first meeting.  "How old are you, Ella?"  "Three."  "How old are you, Charlotte?"  "Three and a half."

They were united in their desire to test the water in the font.

The big moment!  Peter behaved perfectly.

In the Mary shrine following the baptism.

Isn't he adorable?

With Father Brant and the godparents.  Wish we could have spent more time with this lovely family!  Oh, well... I guess we'll have to go to England next year.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

More Cash

Cash loves his grandma.

At the House of Providence

Today we are in Vancouver. We joined in a tour of the old Providence Academy which Sister Susanne was leading for employees of Providence hospitals.
The whole building is the handiwork of the amazing Mother Joseph:
The building needs a bit of work:
Closets for the sisters on the 4th floor:
A prayer at Mother Joseph's grave with Sister Susanne:

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Among the Holy Names

From our pre-Cash morning: a tour of the Holy Names Sisters' Heritage Center at Mary's Woods. It is a beautiful complex, full of treasures. Plus, there were deer!

Cash on demand

Cash and his daddy at the same age.
Cash and his auntie.
Cash and his mommy.

In Hillsboro


Sunday, July 20, 2014

Friday, July 18, 2014

At dinner

We had dinner at McMenamin's on Queen Anne. The clowns came in and looked around but then they left. I think there wasn't enough room under the tables for their big shoes.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

In Redmond again

Zizi wore pigtails because of the heat. O for more 93 degree days.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Flower kitties

Tommy looked so lovely next to the roses, but she had no interest in posing for a picture. Neither did Hairy.