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11 September 2018

Daughters of Providence celebrate the bi-centennial of their congregation

In 1818 the dream of the founding Sisters, Anne-Marie Cartel, Marie Conan, Fanny Chaplain and Esther Beauchemain, guided by Father Jean-Marie de la Mennais was to provide an education for the very poor, the many homeless children in Brittany France.

In 1897 six sisters from Saint-Brieuc in France arrived in Prince Albert, Saskatchewan (then in the Northwest Territories) with the Mission to “Make Jesus Christ Known and Loved”, firmly rooted in God’s Providence with The Blessed Virgin Mary and St. Joseph as companions and models.

During 120 years in Western Canada, there have been a total of 225 sisters, “prairie women” who have ministered throughout Canada and beyond including the United States, Europe, South America and Africa.

From 1897 to 1959, boarding schools were built in several towns and cities in Saskatchewan and Alberta. For many years, the sisters were present among the Indigenous people. They also devoted themselves primarily to education in the Public and Catholic Schools and as the years went by their services expanded into Pastoral Care, Social Work and in Spirituality.

At times they have partnered with other Congregations including the Brothers of Christian Instruction, the Oblates of Mary Immaculate, the Grey Nuns, the Maryknolls and most recently the Daughters of Providence of Nebbi in Uganda (Africa).

Today it is with grateful hearts that they seek to live with simplicity the reality of their presence among their brothers and sisters. Their loving care is rooted in contemplation of the Word and in Prayer.

In Saskatchewan, the Congregation, Daughters of Providence – Filles de la Providence celebrated the bi-centennial of their congregation in the Diocese of Prince Albert on June 10th 2018 and in the Diocese of Saskatoon on June 17th 2018.

Memories, sharings, rememberings of many passed years were signs of continued friendship between sisters and friends.

Sister Dolorès Bussière, FDLP

Founders of the Mission in Canada (1897)