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A House of Compassion

When the Sisters of St. Joseph arrived in Toronto on Oct. 7, 1851, their first concern was for orphans and the sick poor. As Irish immigrants swarmed into the city — hungry, sick, in need of housing and care — Mother Delphine and her companions responded. From the orphan asylum, they went out to nurse the sick and comfort the dying.

Jubilarians 70

In September 1940, 12 young women, hoping to become Sisters of St. Joseph of Toronto, arrived at 89 St. Alban's Street from across Canada: one from St. Patrick's in Vancouver, B.C., three from St. Joseph's in Rosetown, Sask., and the rest from Ontario — one from Whitby, two from St. Catharines and five from Toronto.

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Sister Marguerite Walters
Sr. Marguerite was born and grew up in Winnipeg, Manitoba. She was taught by the Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary in both elementary and secondary school. In high school, she studied commercial courses in preparation for a career in the business world.

Jubilarians 50 - My Journey As A Sister of St. Joseph

Sister Anne Marie Marrin
"Home was the foundation of my vocation where faith was lived, not necessarily talked about, and living in the community has given me great opportunities to express that love in ministering to others. In 1970 Sister Mary Zimmerman asked me to open the first Hospital-based Storefront Clinic. That was a great challenge to me, and her confidence in me encouraged me to move forward.

Sisters Ellen Leonard, Jean Leahy, Clare Garcillano and Theresa Rodgers. Telling a Story of Peace and Justice

On April 1, 2011, Sisters Ellen Leonard, Jean Leahy and Theresa Rodgerswelcomed Sr. Clare Garcillano into their home. Sr. Clare, a Sister of St. Paul of Chartres, came here as a Development and Peace Solidarity Visitor from Timor Leste (East Timor), the world's newest nation (2002). It is found between Australia and Indonesia.

2011 Haiti Newsletter

The 2011 Haiti Newsletter is now available to download as a PDF.

Please download Foxit Reader if you require a free PDF reader.

Responding To Unmet Needs Of The Day

In the "Règlements" (rule of life) for the Sisters of St. Joseph established in France around 1650 we find this statement of purpose: "to lead others to union with God and with every kind of neighbour by undertaking all the spiritual and corporal works of mercy of which women are capable." There were no limits to what they could do.

Sister Jacqueline, far right, joins the bridge walk. Sisters Join The Bridge Walk for International Women's Day

The day was chilly and Sister Jacqueline de Verteuil was shivering in the cold, but she didn't let it stop her from joining Sister Jean Leahy for the Join Me on the Bridge event. For March 8, International Women's Day, thousands of women around the world gathered on bridges to draw attention to women's issues and their struggle for equality, rights, safety and freedom.

The Art of Friendly Visiting

On Saturday, Jan. 22, 2011, a group of 14 women and men gathered at Mustard Seed on 791 Queen Street East. Their goal: to learn about the particularities of friendly visiting in homes of people who, through age or disability, have limited ability to interact and socialize with others.

Participants included volunteers from several different parishes, from the In Good Company program and from other agencies. Also present were people interested in exploring friendly visiting.

Sister Delphine Fontbonne: Five Groundbreaking Years

On Feb. 7, 1856, Sister Delphine Fontbonne, founder of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Toronto, died in Toronto. In her last letter, written on Jan. 18 of the same year to Sister Felicity, she sounded besieged, alluding to the typhus epidemic that had claimed some Sisters and laid others low, of another Sister dying of tuberculosis, of being far too busy to write.

She had arrived with three other much younger Sisters of St. Joseph in 1851. Yet during that short time, she:

World Day of Prayer for the Sick

We celebrate the World Day of Prayer for the Sick on Feb. 11, 2011. The date was not randomly chosen; it is the feast of Our Lady of Lourdes. And while there are many shrines around the world noted for blessings and healings, Lourdes, pictured at right, is the most notable.

Feb. 2: World Day for Consecrated Life

In 1997, Pope John Paul II instituted a day of prayer for women and men in consecrated life. In the Catholic Church, the consecrated life is lived by members of religious institutions like priests, brothers, and sisters. The Holy Father asked that we take a moment to give thanks for those who have taken vows of chastity, poverty and obedience.

Week of Prayer for Christian Unity

During the week of Jan. 18 to 25, 2011, Christians the world over celebrate the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity. The roots of this week go back to the 1800s; it is one of the oldest, most widely observed ecumenical events in the world.

This universal week of prayer encourages Christians of all denominations to meet, to participate in various liturgical and other community activities, and to pray together that all may be one, as Christ desires.

Haiti: Remembering and Rebuilding

Jan. 12, 2011 marked the one-year anniversary of the earthquake that claimed the lives of over 300,000 people in Haiti. We are constantly reminded of that day by the sight of collapsed buildings, streets full of rubble, people with missing limbs and more than 1.5 million displaced families.

Sister Mary Alban Bouchard Second Anniversary of the Haitian Earthquake

Sister Mary Alban attended memorials for the second anniversary of the Haiti earthquake.

It is 10 p.m., Jan. 12, 2012.  I have just come back to my room from a Memorial mass at our parish, Sacre Coeur, at 5 p.m. followed by watching together the televised Memorial at Titanyen, the place of the mass graves where bodies unearthed and dead in the streets were buried.

Haiti Earthquake Anniversary

Jan. 12, 2011, will commemorate the first anniversary of Haiti’s earthquake. Many services have been planned. On the eve, there is a candlelight Mass and blessing of the mass graves of earthquake victims, and now of the cholera victims, in the wild, deserted fields of Titanyin.

Celebrate! magazine features CSJ Ministry with Maturing Adults

The Winter 2011 edition of Celebrate! magazine featured an article on the CSJ Ministry with Maturing Adults in Barrie, Ontario. A PDF of the article is available for download. If you need a PDF reader, please download Foxit Reader.

Ministry of Presence in Canada's North

Did you think Sisters of St. Joseph of Toronto are found only in Toronto? Meet Sister Trudy Zunti, pictured at right, who received an award for her work after 3 ½ years in Thompson, Manitoba, where she lived with Sister Andrea Dumont. Sister Trudy is on the short side, round, blue-eyed and smiling — about the most welcoming, non-threatening person you could hope to meet.

Jazz Fundraiser for Haiti Raises over $3400

On Dec. 12, 2010, the Rex Jazz & Blues Bar at 194 Queen St. W. was packed for the “Jazz Fundraiser for Haiti Kids” organized by Manfred Koch, pictured at right playing a trombone.

Manfred had gathered musicians from a number of jazz bands and The Rex was hopping. Over $3400 was raised for the Sisters’ work in Haiti.

Associates and Companions Celebrate Fr. Médaille’s Anniversary

Hamilton CSJ Companions and Sisters invited the CSJ Associates of Toronto to celebrate the 400th birthday of Father Médaille’s at the Hamilton Motherhouse on Nov. 20, 2010. Pictured at right with Mary Huan in pink at her side, Sister Doreen Kraemer, a Sister of St. Joseph of London, facilitated the topic on “Living from Our Rich Heritage”.

Celebrate! magazine article on Faith Connections

The November 2010 edition of Celebrate! magazine features an article on Faith Connections. It is available for download as a PDF file. If you need a PDF reader, please download the free Foxit Reader.

Interview with Sister Mary Alban in Haiti

The Fall 2010 edition of St. Michael's College Alumni Magazine features an interview with Sister Mary Alban Bouchard on the earthquake in Haiti. It is available for download in PDF format. If you need a free PDF reader, please download Foxit Reader.

Retreat Boosts Associates in their Faith Journey

Maureen McCabe, a CSJ Associate, shares her experience of the CSJ Associates retreat.

Like many I had been looking forward to the CSJ Associate retreat for months; it lived up to everything I expected and more!

Sr. Ellen Leonard Co-edits a Book for Joanne McWilliam

"Joanne McWilliam taught me at St. Michael's in my doctoral studies. As a woman in theology and religious studies she mentored many graduate students. I am grateful for her inspiration and friendship over many years," said Sister Ellen of her relationship with Joanne. Sister Ellen co-edited the book From Logos to Christos: Essays on Christology in Honour of Joanne McWilliam with Kate Merriman. "The editing was a work of love," she said.

Haitian Musings: Waiting For Hurricane Tomas

Sister Lorraine Malo sent this along from Port-au-Prince on Nov. 5, 2010.
All day yesterday we watched and waited for the upcoming hurricane with someone checking the Internet every few minutes. The sky was a stone cold grey, the winds were howling, the rain just a quarter inch above us but not yet falling. 

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