On the evening of May 22, 2015, at Saint-Roch-de-l’Achigan, the launching of a book about the history of the parish convent, took place. Sister Françoise Lafortune, SNJM attended as the honorary guest, and Zoé Lamarche was the MC for this event.
Mrs. Lise Gauthier, president of the Historical Society and co-author of the book, mentioned that following the municipality’s decision to restore the Old Convent, the project of producing a work dedicated to the history of this heritage building took shape.
In view of this, she believes that the communities of L’Achigan and Saint Roch owe a debt of gratitude for the place where the Congregation of the Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary had taught, trained and educated generations of young girls.
And the long-awaited book was introduced after each of the many collaborators involved in its writing, production and publication, were named and thanked. This nearly 180-page work is illustrated with more than 200 pictures and consists of nine chapters which Lise Gauthier presented one by one.
Following this, the MC introduced the Honorary Guest “who was born in the parish of Saint-Roch-de-l’Achigan, who attended Mass in this chapel for many years and who, for 50 years, has been a Sister in the Congregation of the Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary.”
Here are a few excerpts from Sister Françoise’s Talk: (the complete text can be found below in a PDF format)
A little bit of history to begin with …
Saint-Roch-de-l’Achigan was the 8th foundation in our young Congregation which was founded in 1843. In 1855, the Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary were approached to teach the young girls from Saint-Roch and this they did up until 1969. Forty years later, in 2009, the municipality acquired the convent. What an honor to be here with you!!!
My comments will touch upon the following three aspects:
• My life in the convent during my secondary level studies
• My life as a parishioner of Saint-Roch-de-l’Achigan
• My life in the Congregation of the Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary
And Sister Françoise concluded by saying:
YES, my Old Convent … now brand new …
To all the lovers of history and archives, THANK YOU!
To all of the SNJM’s,
teachers, cooks, musicians, support staff,
who gave their lives to several generations of young girls … THANK YOU!
To all those who are present or absent
who brought a piece of the history
of the municipality and of the Congregation back to life, THANK YOU!
To bequeath this precious heritage to future generations
is a debt of gratitude. It is a sacred story.
We must then offer …
Gratitude to the soul of this convent!
Gratitude to the parish of Saint-Roch-de-l’Achigan !
Gratitude to the Congregation of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary!
Yes, my Old Convent … brand new … THANK YOU!
The evening ended with a friendly gathering.
LONG LIFE TO THE OLD CONVENT!!!