Archive for June, 2015

This Blessed Land

Monday, June 29th, 2015

Land of the elk, the bear, the loon,

A thousand others beneath the moon.

The Inuit and Aboriginal, it’s their eternal home.

A place to hunt a place to die, a place to

“Forest gods” on High.

Twightlight falls, the end is near of mortal fear.

Listen to the paddles, singing in the swell,

Hard muscled men working like hell ,

Sweat in the sunshine, burning to the touch,

Oh how I love this Country very much.

Our native land was moulded from ancient potter’s clay,

Scooped up among the centuries on wild and rugged days,

To make a fire, to build a camp, to keep a man alive.

Fight on to keep a continent, however we contrive.

So here’s a friendly warning, to any foe who tries,

We’re peaceful, we Canadians,

Yes, just like our darn black flies!

 

This poem was written and submitted by 87 year old Ernest Rivers.

Now living in O’Connor St. Clair Community Residence

Friends of OLM Do It Again

Sunday, June 21st, 2015
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A Display Representing some of olm’s Mission works

2015 marks the 125th year of the founding, in 1890, of the Diocese of Alexandria-Cornwall. A variety of special celebrations had been held to mark the occasion throughout the diocese.

On May 21 2015, the Orders of Sisters who have served in the diocese or are presently serving in varying capacities, were invited as well as the faithful from the diocese, to attend a “Mass of Thanksgiving”, that was held at the co-cathedral in Cornwall.

Friends of Our Lady’s Missionaries, following the Mass, had set up a display, only a bird’s-eye view of the marvellous work of OLM in Missions around the world and in Canada . The display centered around a poster that read, “Our Lady’s Missionaries, Founded in Alexandria in 1949”. Many following the Mass visited the display. Some visitors were learning of OLM for the first time, and the words founded in Alexandria surely was a point of discussion. At the end of the evening there were so many Glengarrians at the display it was difficult to end the evening!

Many of the clergy from the Diocese dropped by and Bishop Marcel Damphousse showed immense interest in the work of OLM and was warm with his praise of Msgr. D. R Macdonald, the founder of Our Lady’s Missionaries in Alexandria in 1949. Nurses who trained in Cornwall with OLM were happy to speak of the days gone by that seemed to be filled with joy, laughter and hard work at the Hotel Dieu Hospital as it was called at that time. The joy of the 5oth anniversary celebration in Glengarry was close to memory as we all exclaimed “OLM Did It Again” even when they were unable to attend.

Written by: Glenda McDonell

 

lft to rt-Miriam Wheeler, Glenda McDonell,Heather Leger

 


OLM Visits Alexandria-Cornwall CWL

Friday, June 12th, 2015
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left to rt- Sr.Terry Wilson CSC,  Sr.Mary Gauthier,olm Sr. Gwen Legault,olm

 

Recently, the Diocese of Alexandria-Cornwall circulated it’s Diocesan plan to all the parishioners throughout that area. Sister Mary Gauthier and I were invited to attend the Catholic Women’s League meeting held to discuss the plan’s vision statement “With open hearts, attentive ears and hands of service, we radiate the joy and hope of the Gospel”.

As reports were read, we were impressed to hear many touching stories of the past year’s numerous works of service and diocesan events in which these faithful women gave witness to their Mission and Vision Statement.

Several examples of monetary gifts were presented, one particular one was the annual gift Our Lady’s Missionaries receive from the sale of Mother’s Day flowers. This custom was begun when Father Dan, our founder was still living in Alexandria. I would like to mention that this CWL Convention was held in the hall that Father Dan had built many years ago. This hall was also where the farewell party was held when OLM’s moved from our beloved Alexandria to live in Toronto.

Before leaving the now beautifully refurbished Hall, a group of First Nation’s Women led us in prayer, with the customary cleansing ceremony. It felt very significant as our prayer was coinciding with the Truth and Reconciliation Commission being held at this same time in Ottawa.

After attending the Eucharistic Celebration, we were bagpiped back to the hall where we enjoyed lunch and conversation, knowing that our day was completed by the CWL’s motto “One heart, one voice, one mission”.

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Olm’s receiving generous donation from Alexandria -Cornwall CWL, left background- Linda Ryan CWL, rt forward- Sr. Mary Gauthier olm, Sr.Gwen Legault olm

 

Written by: Sr.Gwen Legault, olm

 

 

 

 

Call To Action

Saturday, June 6th, 2015

 

TRUTH AND RECONCILIATION

OTTAWA MAY 29 – JUNE 3, 2015

The two most powerful moments at the Truth and Reconciliation celebrations in Ottawa were the Walk on Sunday to Ottawa City Hall and the Circle of Prayer.

Walk for Reconciliation: As we gathered to begin the walk I met some Indigenous women who had travelled from Squamish and Powell River in British Columbia. One of these women told me how it warmed her heart when she heard God called, “The Creator”, for the first time. In contrast they had been punished in the residential school for using this title from their own heritage.

Chief Littlechild addressed the crowd before we left on the walk. He had been taken from his parents at the age of four. He spoke of his pain at that separation. Like others he was not allowed to visit with his own siblings during his time at the school and found his outlet in sports.

Our group had formed up at Victoria Island and when those more adventurous ones who had started in Gatineau across the river arrived we joined up with them making a crowd which was estimated at 7 thousand. There were many groups of Indigenous peoples wearing their distinctive dress, civil society groups, and church groups all carrying banners. Among these were a group representing The Canadian Religious Conference. As we passed St. Andrew’s Anglican Church the bells were chimed and at this moment I found myself tearing up with the emotions welling up inside me. Just before reaching City Hall there at the roadside were the “Raging Grannies” of Ottawa!

Prayer Circle This event was held at the Human Rights Monument later in the afternoon. A woman elder spoke of how the past suffering has made her and others strong. After making a prayer in her own language she laid the first stone in a symbolic laying of stones as a statement of memory and hope. Leaders of the four denominations named in the Residential School Settlement-Anglican, Roman Catholic, United and Presbyterian each laid stones. With the drums to accompany a short song was then sung by all as the crowd were invited to come up and place a stone as well.

The words of the song were: “Listen to my heart song,

Listen to my heart song,

I will never forget you,

I will never forsake you.”

Recalling how so many children died at the residential schools from TB and other diseases I once again found this ritual very powerful. I also noticed how much more gracious and at home the Indigenous people were in their participation. Many took the stone in their hands and offered it to the four directions before placing it at the foot of monument. We the settlers have so much to learn and we’ve only begun the journey of reconciliation.

Written by: Sr.Rosemary Williamson,olm

TRC Ottawa May 30 102
TRC Ottawa May 30 158TRC Ottawa May 30 156
TRC Ottawa May 30 144 - Copy - CopyTRC Ottawa May 30 101TRC Ottawa May 30 133TRC Ottawa May 30 117 - Copy