On Saturday 31 August many Sisters gathered at Holy Cross Church, Glendale, to acknowledge and congratulate the jubilarians’ 670 years of ministry in the footsteps of Julian Tenison Woods and St Mary of the Cross MacKillop.
The figure of 670 is derived from the combined service of eleven Sisters:
- Sisters Eucharia Jackson, Loretta Mary Mullins and Margaret Connell: 70 years professed (Platinum).
- Sisters Betty Brown, Mary Cabrini Boyle, Catherine Sheedy, Denise Edmunds, Ann Gallagher and Norah Creigh: 60 years professed (Diamond).
- Sisters Kate Brazier and Carmel Lillis: 50 years professed (Golden).
On Tuesday 3 September, the Sisters gathered again, this time at St Joseph’s Convent Lochinvar, to celebrate 130 years since the foundation of the congregation. A Mass of Thanksgiving, attended by Sisters, their families and friends, former Sisters, members of the clergy and those influenced by the Josephite way, was followed by the blessing of the 'Tenison Woods', a memorial to the Sisters currently living. With lunch came time to renew friendships and tell stories. In the cemetery opposite the convent, a ceremony saw the dedication of a new memorial stone in memory of the 238 Sisters who have died since 1883. All except one are buried there.
During the day, two booklets were distributed: a history of the four Founding Sisters by Anne Cavanagh RSJ and Dona Eis Requiem which names the Sisters who have died and tells a little of the story of each.
Article by Tracey Edstein, photo courtesy of Ellen Royan RSJ.