During the day, the Lord sends his love to me.” (Psalm 42, 8)
October 31, 2017, Sister Monique Longpré,
in religion Marie-Agnès-d'Assise,
went home to God.
She was 86 years old and had been professed for 61 years.
Born in Montreal, Quebec, she was the 4th of the 10 children
of Honoré Longpré and Agnès Pesant.
“Monique grew up in the Maisonneuve area of Montreal, in Très-Saint-Nom-de-Jésus Parish. The first four children arrived in quick succession with only a year between each of them. Her father, a dairy farmer and her mother, a musician, were both unfaltering. They valued family prayer and the rosary. Monique attended the parish school directed by the Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary. During her 5th and 6th grades at the primary level, her religious vocation was awakening through the influence of her teacher, Sister Adolphe-Marie.
Upon completing primary school Monique, who was attracted to family and social studies, followed an entire course offered by the Sisters of Notre-Dame-du-Bon-Conseil (Our Lady of Good Counsel) and graduated when she was 18 years old. Well prepared, she taught culinary arts and sewing in two schools belonging to the Commission scolaire de Montréal (Montreal Catholic School Commission), Boucher-de-la-Bruère and Baril. She was 22 years old when she entered the SNJM Novitiate, in Outremont.
For 3 years after her religious profession, Sister Marie-Agnès-d'Assise taught culinary arts and sewing at Notre-Dame-de-Bonsecours School. Subsequent to her Juniorate year, she taught at the Institut de pédagogie familial for 6 years, followed by 5 years at the l'Institut familial de Ste-Martine. Her attention to people and to the needs of the community motivated her to study nursing. For more than 30 years she would take care of her Sisters, first in the infirmaries at the Motherhouse, then in Valleyfield and at Residence Ste-Émélie.
"Discreet, sensitive and welcoming, she ensured a caring and generous presence to each one, despite her own fragile health." "Sister Monique attached great importance to being welcoming, to sharing and to community living."
“In her spare time, she was becoming more skilled at painting and accomplished works that expressed her love of nature and her attention to detail."
At Résidence Albani, Sister Monique, who was now 70 years old, was experiencing health problems and could no longer work full time; she provided services as a nurses’ aid and as a sacristan, contributing as a volunteer as much as she could. In 2013, she joined the small group Mélodie at Ste-Émélie. Her illness came as a shock and she was admitted to the Infirmary in Longueuil. When she recovered, she again helped her Sisters. For two years, her health would fluctuate between attacks of C-difficile where there was fear for her life and an over-all improvement in her health when once again, with so much compassion, she devoted herself to others. Sister Monique was fighting for her life, but the illness had taken over.
Then the Lord came to seek the one who had radiated so much of His love to those around her.
"We will make our home with them.” (John 14:23)
October 29, 2017, Sister Thérèse Laramée,
in religion Marie-Marguerite-de-Jésus
went home to God.
She was 92 years old and had been professed for 70 years.
Born in Montreal, Quebec, she was the 12th of the 13 children
of Arthur Laramée and Hortense Desjardins.
Thérèse grew up in a very close-knit family with exceptional parents. She studied at Notre-Dame-de-Bon-Secours School, directed by the Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary. She confided that: "Due to poor health, I experienced prolonged absences from school every year so my mother stood in as a teacher." From the age of 10, Thérèse began studying piano. At the end of her 11th grade, she remained at home for three years, using this opportunity to study the organ.
When she was 20 years old, she entered the SNJM Novitiate. She was the eighth member of her family to dedicate herself to God: among her brothers, four were Jesuits and two were diocesan priests and one older sister had entered the Congregation of the Missionary Sisters of the Immaculate Conception.
Now named Sister Marguerite-de-Jésus, Thérèse missed her family, especially her sister Marguerite, who was two years younger than she was and who would later join her as an SNJM. As a missionary novice, she remained at the novitiate and taught piano at Mont-Jésus-Marie, a small elementary school housed in the same building. It was her fist teaching assignment, and while she loved the children, she found teaching difficult. She was sustained by the motto: "Accomplish the will of God”. She continued to study the organ, leading her to attain a Master’s Degree.
Throughout her active life, Sister Thérèse was said to have lived in only three houses apart from the Motherhouse: Outremont, Valleyfield and Longueuil, and she taught music for a total of nine years. Upon returning to the Motherhouse, she was named titular organist. This was her true vocation and would remain so right up until her final moments! She also assumed other responsibilities: assisting with the liturgy, animating groups and assisting the Provincial Animator.
In 2005, after the closing of the Motherhouse, Sister Thérèse became leader of an SNJM group living at the Motherhouse of the Sisters of Providence in Cartierville, and continued to play the organ during the liturgies. Arriving at Maison Jésus-Marie in 2008, she again became titular organist and also provided a variety of community services.
Her presence elicited the following testimonies: Sister Thérèse "shared her faith and her hope always in a calm manner, with wisdom, patience, humility and sound judgment." "She was close to her Sisters, favoring those who needed help, and was also attentive, a good listener and eager to please."
Sister Thérèse herself summarized her religious life with these words: "seeking a constant relationship with Jesus and Mary" and my devotions: the Eucharist, the Blessed Virgin and Mother Marie-Rose". Faithful to her daily life, she concluded: "My profession as organist kept me close to the Lord".
On October 29, 2017, she went home to God, with whom she already had a close relationship. She is now singing, in the most melodious way possible, the praises of the One whom she had honored throughout her entire life.
"Whoever follows me will have the light of life." (John 8, 12)
October 16, 2017, Sister Marie-Thérèse Côté,
in religion Marie.-Hélène-Alma,
went home to God.
She was 93 years old and had been professed for 70 years.
Born in Sherbrooke, Quebec, she was the 3rd of the 6 children
of Émile Côté and Alma Berthiaume.
Marie-Thérèse attended École Ste-Thérèse d'Avila in Sherbrooke, directed by the Sisters of the Congregation of Notre-Dame for her primary grades. She then became a boarder at Couvent Maplewood in Waterloo for the Arts-Sciences Course. It was there that she became closely acquainted with the Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary. After graduation, she took a commercial course and worked in a store for two years before entering the SNJM Novitiate when she was 22 years old.
Sister Hélène-Alma, an unassuming woman, offered little in terms of providing information about her own history: she attentively listened to others! As a teacher at the primary level, she quickly became familiar with several levels of education at several schools: seven in ten years. Following École familiale de Disraéli, where she taught in the 8th and 9th grades, she went to École Normale Notre-Dame-des-Anges in Viauville, where she taught and was also directress of discipline.
For several years, she was the Directress of Postulants at the Novitiate in the Motherhouse. Upon returning to teaching, she also became the principal at École de Garthby in the Eastern Townships.
Sister Marie-Thérèse assumed management of the Beloeil Retreat House, before being asked to become secretary for the General Leadership Team in Pierrefonds, where she would serve for nine years. During the last 17 years of her active life she shared community life at Ste-Émélie Convent, providing various support services: assisting the provincial administration, as a receptionist, accompaniment of the sick, as a sacristan, as a driver, taking charge of ‘Cercle Eulalie’, welcoming visitors ... Sister Marie-Thérèse spread joy with her smile, the quality of her welcome, her spirit of service and her discretion.
"In the service of education, with love and tenderness, Sister Marie-Thérèse worked hard to nurture minds and hearts." "A deeply spiritual woman, at Beloeil's Retreat House, she was able to create a climate conducive to prayer and contemplation." "Training the postulants, with kindness, she channeled their energy and transmitted the SNJM values."
When her illness progressed, Sister Marie-Thérèse at the age of 83 was welcomed into the infirmary in Longueuil. Ten years went by during which Sister Marie-Thérèse devoted herself to the ministry of prayer. Until the end, she took pleasure in reading and she dedicated " her heart and her arms to the evangelical message with benevolence and in a very personal way." She was ready to meet Jesus!
“Look! Here is the bridegroom! Come out to meet him.” (Matt. 25, 6)
September 15, 2017, Sister Madeleine Poliquin,
in religion Marie-Aldophe
went home to God.
She was 98 years old and had been professed for 74 years.
Born in Montreal, Quebec, she was the 6th of the 10 children
of Adolphe Poliquin and Arthémise Rochon.
In Madeleine's family there were five boys and five girls, including her twin who died in infancy. The children grew up in Montreal in Paroisse St-Louis-de-France. Their parents valued knowledge and education and made many sacrifices to provide advanced studies for all of their children: classical college and music. At home, daily family prayer and a living faith initiated the growth of seeds for vocations: five children chose to give their life to God, four Sisters and a Jesuit.
Madeleine attended Pensionnat Mont-Royal from Grades 1 to 11, then attained the 4th level in Arts and Sciences and completed her 9th grade in music. Because of this, she came to know the Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary, although she was also familiar with them because her two older sisters, Cecile and Teresa, were already Sisters in this Congregation.
“Already when I was very young, I was dreaming about taking the most clear-cut path, that of dedicating myself to the Lord for my entire life. At the convent, I admired the devotion of the SNJM Sisters and their ability for teaching: both in the classroom and at the piano."
Madeleine was 22 years old when she entered the SNJM novitiate. "I was really happy in the novitiate, and I felt that I fitted in very well; joyfulness, prayer and work were my companions."
Sister Marie-Adolphe pursued her career as a piano teacher in La Patrie, Côteau-Station, Maskinongé, Hochelaga and St-Lambert and assumed the position of director in these last two institutions. She taught for a total of 43 years. With her peaceful nature and her renowned competency, her companions and pupils were happy with her.
When she was 66, she moved to Résidence Ste-Émélie where, for 23 years, she would render community services: helping the bursar, seamstress, accompanying patients and as a receptionist. Sister Madeleine’s love of God was reflected in her everyday life: "A pleasant, sensitive and dedicated companion, she was always ready to be of service. She was a ray of sunshine, whose zest for life helped her to endure the physical suffering that she was experiencing.”
In 2008, Sr. Madeleine was welcomed to the infirmary in Longueuil. It was now her turn to be cared for. During the last two years, her sister, Marthe, SNJM, brought her the blessing of her daily presence. "Sister Madeleine carried within herself music that turned life into a dance."
“Just like the clay in the potter’s hand, so are you in my hand." (Jer. 18, 6)
September 7, 2017, Sister Cécile Coiteux
in religion Marie.-Rose-Monique
went home to God.
She was 86 years old and had been professed for 66 years.
Born in Repentigny, Quebec, she was the 4th of the 11 children
of Frédéric Coiteux and Robertine Amireault.
Cecile grew up happily on her father’s farm. The 11 children who arrived in rapid succession were welcomed into a family that was both fervent and hardworking. As the eldest girl, Cécile learned well how to do chores around the house and displayed remarkable talents. She succeeded extremely well at the rural school, and after her elementary classes, she continued her studies at the Pensionnat de l'Épiphanie, where she met the Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary. Cécile was a clear-thinking girl, conciliatory and attentive to others, who liked to laugh and who was inspired by nature. She was 18 years old when she decided to become an SNJM Sister.
Sister Rose-Monique began teaching first grade at the elementary level and continued teaching other grades up to grade 9 in Longueuil, Mont-Jésus-Marie and St-Hilaire, before specializing in Visual Arts which she taught at Collège de l'Assomption and École Secondaire Marie-Rose. Sister Cécile had close to 40 years of teaching experience.
Appointed to be in charge of the house at Val-Morin, Sister Cécile put her wide-ranging variety of skills at the service of others. She ensured the well-being of vacationers, both Sisters and laypeople, attended to the quality and variety of the meals, the beauty of the surroundings and the atmosphere of relaxation ... Twenty-three years went by quickly.
When she was 81, Sister Cécile had to leave her position and retired at Maison Jésus-Marie where she continued to render community services according to her capabilities: accompanying the sick and taking care of decorating before suffering a stroke which caused paralysis and she in turn, had to receive nursing care.
"Active and peaceful, the quality of her being was a testimony to her faith and her gift of self to the Lord."
"Sister Cécile knew how to create a beautiful environment: as an artist, she arranged shapes and colors. Her pieces of enamelware on copper continue to remind us of her benevolent presence".
"As a generous woman, her gifts of time and self merged with her qualities for welcoming, listening and being in harmony."
May the Lord, her Master Potter, welcome her who welcomed others so warmly!