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Celebration of Gratitude May 20, 2005 The SNJM’s of Quebec extended their gratitude and appreciation to the Quebec Provincial Leadership Team at the end of their five-year mandate. Over 300 Sisters and Associates, gathered for this celebration with the Leadership Team, in the Motherhouse cafeteria. A festive mood was enhanced by the music of Francine and Gilles Grenier, a couple from Beloeil. The celebration began with a moment of silence in memory of Sr. Claire Fitzgibbon, a former provincial coordinator who died during her mandate. A lit candle, placed in front of a photograph of Sr. Claire, reminded us of her presence among us. THANK YOU’S TO EACH TEAM MEMBER Sr. Yolande Frappier invited each one, as she was called to come forward and to sit in the chair of honour. Here are some extracts from the messages presented: “She is not afraid of challenges. They fuel her energy. She shows courage and audacity. She truly lives the following verse from PS 23: Even though I walk through the valley of death, I will fear no evil.” Sister Jacqueline Boudreau, please come forward. Sister Françoise Lafortune thanked her in our name. ‘‘Her heart is much larger than her purse strings. Throughout many years, she has graciously and steadfastly worked for the Leadership Team and the local communities. Sister Suzanne Leclaire, please come forward.’’ Sister Monique Gougeon thanked her in our name. ‘‘She wrote in the Échos du Québec : ‘‘During the darkest hours and the happiest of times, the spoken word, like a supple instrument in the hand of an artist, becomes the opportunity of exchanging ideas, sharing, encouragement and comfort especially in the last hours before death. Sister Madeleine Tanguay, please come forward.’’ Sister Germaine Baril thanked her in our name. ‘‘She has spoken to us about Education in the faith, of sharing the Gospel with one another. Her hearty laugh proves that it is good to choose Life and Happiness. Sister Jocelyne Latreille, please come forward.’’ Mr. Gerry MacDonald, Sister Mary Ellen Collins and Sister Ytolande Laberge thanked her in our name.’’ ‘‘Bishop Bourget affirmed that Mother Marie-Rose saw God in all things. It is this reality and attitude that she suggests that we welcome everyone with our third ear, the ear of the heart. Sister Évelyn Bastien, please come forward.’’ Sister Éliane André thanked her in our name. These five women, being honoured today, have worked together as a team to accomplish much that will impact on our future. THE RITUAL OF OFFERING In an atmosphere of recollection, inspired by the soft tones of violin music, each leadership team member received, with open arms, the gratitude expressed by the local animators, associate directors and some other members. This was a gesture of thanksgiving for blessings received. By means of the microphone system, the Sisters in the infirmary, were united in prayer for the leadership team. Sister Madeleine Tanguay, provincial coordinator, offered a prayer of gratitude for all the blessings received. ‘‘We offer you, O God, all the signs of appreciation and affection that we have received. Thank you for the support that sustained us. Thank you for all the behind-the-scenes service that helped to lighten our work. Thank you for the commitment to participation and collaboration that fuelled our energy during this mandate. Transform all these gifts into an eternal harvest. We ask this in the name of Jesus, the Christ. Amen. The team having just returned all to God, did not leave empty-handed. They received a gift of gratitude for the enormous tasks that they accomplished and for their quality of community facilitation. They were also graciously invited to rest and relax after these years of generous service. PASSING THE TORCH During a very prayerful ritual, the present provincial leadership team ‘‘passed the torch’’ of our SNJM mission in Quebec to the newly elected team who will begin their mandate on July 1, 2005. Sister Jacqueline Boudreau gave her candle to Sister Lise Marleau; Sister Madeleine Tanguay, the coordinator of health care, gave hers to Sister Rollande Coderre; Sister Jocelyne Latreille gave hers to Sister Rachelle Fréchette and Sister Evelyn Bastien gave hers to Sister Constance Létourneau. Then Sister Suzanne Leclaire, the provincial treasurer prayed the following blessing: May Jesus, our light and our hope, be with you, Lise, Rolande, Rachel and Constance. May he always be before you to guide you, May he be behind you to guard you. May he inspire your actions and decisions. May he protect and bless you.! All responded in song: Let us carry the light, life will burst forth. Let us carry the light, hope will be reborn. AND THE CELEBRATION CONTINUED WITH THE JOY OF RENEWING AQUAINTANCES AND ENHANCED BY THE SOUND OF MUSIC. . .
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