Little did the parish and Pastor of St. Marguerite Bourgeoys Parish realize when they served bread and soup at the luncheon on the feast of their Patron Saint, that they were carrying on a legacy of our Saint. Sunday, January 15, they were honouring Saint Marguerite and her daughters in a beautiful celebration of commemoration and gratitude. The soup and chowder were prepared by the pastor who was actually unaware of the significance of the bread and soup offered to us as they recreated the spirit of Marguerite. Father Bill Burke is to be commended for his efforts in promoting the knowledge and respect for Mother Bourgeoys. He himself, like Marguerite, is faced with rebuilding the church after the disastrous flooding as well rebuilding parish community after the closure of the three parishes which form the new St. Marguerite Bourgeoys Parish. He commented that this coming together to honour Marguerite and her daughters has proven a community builder. In coming together to honour us they honour their own efforts to become a new parish. People were meeting and speaking to other parishioners for the first time. Bread and soup proved to be another catalyst in the process.
On January 12, at our weekly morning Prayer Service open to all the residents at Andrews, Sister Della Gaudet gave a short reflection in which she shared some fascinating stories about our foundress. This was greatly appreciated by the participants.
At 11:30, nearly all of the PEI sisters joined us for prayer in Andrews’ Activity Room. Our prayer opened with “O St. Marguerite” accompanied by Sister Phyllis Gallant at the keyboard. A delicious dinner followed, served by Andrews’ kitchen staff. A large picture of St. Marguerite with children, (a replica of the statues in downtown Montréal), adorned the wall. It was a wonderful opportunity to come together, to enjoy one another’s company and to celebrate our foundress.
January 15th, Notre-Dame-de-Bon-Secours Chapel was alive with CND sisters, associates, friends, and supporters as we celebrated St. Marguerite Bougeoys’ feast day.
Archbishop Christian Lepine presided over our celebration of the mass and spoke of Marguerite’s history and her impact on the beginnings of Ville Marie. He emphasized, over and over again, that the source of her strength was her life of prayer, especially prayer to Mary and to Eucharist. Her life is a model for, not only the CND community, but for all believers. A life dedicated to following Jesus in the accompaniment of Mary.