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Marguerite Bourgeoys: A Builder?

Marguerite Bourgeoys – To Love is to Serve

In 1652, Paul de Chomedey de Maisonneuve (native of Neuville-sur-Vanne), founder and governor of Ville-Marie (Montreal), was passing through Troyes in search of a teacher. For Marguerite, it is a call: “I offered to go and he accepted me.”

“About fifteen days after the Feast of All Saints,” following her long journey (two long months at sea) from Troyes to New France and her stay in Québec to care for the convalescing recruits, Marguerite finally arrived in Ville-Marie. She had at last reached the place where she would fulfill her mission, the place for which she had left her family and her native France.

However, in this December 1653, there were no opportunities for her to teach. This was because there were no school age children. What ways did she find to integrate herself into the life of the colony? How did she demonstrate her devotion?

Marguerite’s zeal quickly found means of expression. She responded to the needs of the settlers, comforted the troubled, assisted the foundress of Hôtel-Dieu, Jeanne Mance (also from the region of Champagne, the town of Langres), spread the Good News with humble everyday actions, and counseled all those who sought her advice. Clearly, she was in no way withdrawn or selfish.

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Vocation/Formation Committee Meeting at the mother house

Our committee had a great meeting this past weekend (Oct. 25-26, 2014). Creativity and energy are definitely not lacking in the members of this group, and soon, you will be receiving material from us. In the letter that accompanies the mailing, we will tell you more about the Year of Consecrated Life that Pope Francis has declared for 2015. You will also find a new prayer for vocations and a sample of our new brochure. In the meantime, we invite you to ponder the question of “vocation” and the meaning that a year dedicated to Consecrated Life might have for you.

Congregation of Notre Dame Sisters at the National Religious Vocation Conference

On Tuesday, November 2, Sisters Peggy and Mary Ann are driving to Chicago for the National Religious Vocation Conference. We will be staying with Sisters Darleen, Regina and Janet. While there, we hope to connect with Congregation of Notre Dame Associate Father Patrick Marshall, a College Chaplain who moderates a weekly discernment group with his students. We are eager to learn what Patrick can share with what these young adults are looking for as they discern a vocation to Religious life and priesthood. The workshops look good: effective ways of using media in vocation work, preparing for candidates who are from cultures unlike our own, issues of civil, canon and immigration law, screening for formation and more! We hope to learn to sing the hymn composed for the Year of Consecrated life. “Wake the World with Dawning Joy” is based on the words of Pope Francis. The opening lines: “Wake the world with dawning joy! Wake it with your gladness” have a Visitation ring about them!

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