With courage and commitment, four women stepped off a train from Montreal to meet the needs of the most marginalized and vulnerable people of Kingston on December 13, 1861. Their primary resources were the few dedicated people who had invited them, their willing hands and their belief in Providence. Their moral courage led them to enter the homes of ill and dying persons with compassion, to greet with kindness those persons who struggled with mental illness, and to create a home for children and adults who lived on the streets. The Sisters of Providence of St. Vincent de Paul could see dignity in a person, while others looked on with disgust. They acted with compassion when all others looked the other way. The Sisters were respectful with people bearing the burden of stigmas in society.
On Founders’ Day across Providence Care we remember this Legacy; that we show respect, dignity and compassion for each person, rather than perpetuate the crippling stigmas alive in our communities. We enhance quality of life when we provide care in people’s homes, no matter how humble. We care for seniors, for persons living with mental illness, and those who are living the final weeks of life. We are there for persons with complex health challenges and those who need to recover their strength through physical rehab. We are the hands of Providence that make a difference for people, for families and for our communities.
This is our Legacy, passed on by all who have served before us. We enhance quality of life.
Neil Elford, Director for Spiritual Health, Mission & Ethics