June 13, 2006
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: Jennifer Roseman, Director of Communications & Development
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Celebrating God’s Favor was the theme of the Mass of Thanksgiving celebrated by Archbishop Alex J. Brunett. It also included the renewal of vows by some of the 14 Jubilarians marking 70, 60, 50 and 25 years of religious life this year.
“Words cannot express how much we as a state and we as a Church owe to your ministry and dedication,” the archbishop told the sisters in his homily. “We rejoice in your presence and thank God each day that you will continue to be a living sign of the spirit of God among us.
The symbolism of the Mass was rich with meaning. The lace on the altar cloth, more than a century old, was from the sisters’ first school in the West, the former Providence Academy in Vancouver.
Sister Karin Dufault wore the traditional habit to present the archbishop with a donation to The Chief Seattle Club, which provides social service programs that assist urban American Indians, Alaska Natives and First Nation Peoples.
In addition, the gifts of bread and wine were brought forth by sisters in the dress of their countries of origin, including Chile, Vietnam, El Salvador and the Philippines. Historic symbols carried in the entrance procession reflected the sisters’ ministries to native peoples, at a clinic in Haiti, in health care, in education and in housing for the elderly.
The 150th anniversary celebration continues on Saturday, August 5, with an 11 a.m. Mass at Our Lady of Lourdes Cathedral in Spokane, followed by a reception at the historic Davenport Hotel.
On Saturday, September 23, there will be a prayer service at 9:30 a.m. at St. James Church in Vancouver, Wash., followed by an open house at Providence Academy, the sisters? first school in the West. Events closing the year of celebration will be held throughout Mother Joseph Province on December 8.