June 27, 2005

Catherine's cincture and Catherine's letters

Catherine McAuley's Cincture returns to Baggot Street

For many years Catherine McAuley's cincture has been in the care of the Sisters of Mercy of Downpatrick, Ireland. On the occasion of the 150th anniversary of the foundation of the Convent of Mercy in Downpatrick, the community felt that it was an appropriate time to have the cincture referred to Mercy International Centre, Baggot Street, Dublin where the worldwide Mercy family may have access to it.

At a special ceremony in Downpatrick on Sunday 19th June, the cincture was given to Sr Breege O’Neill, Congregational Leader of the Sisters of Mercy, who accepted it on behalf of the Congregation. At a simple ritual on Monday June 20th at Mercy International Centre, Sr Rosie Carroll, Director, on behalf of Mercy worldwide, accepted the cincture into the heritage section of Mercy International Centre where it is now on display alongside Catherine McAuley’s ring.

Sr Breege O'Neill presents Catherine McAuley's cincture to Sr Rosie Carroll

Messages to Ailish O'Brien rsm The Congregation Communications Co-ordinator

Por mucho años el cincture de Catherine McAuley ha estado al cuidado de las Hermanas de la Misericordia de Downpatrick, Irlanda. En la ocasión del 150 aniversario de la fundación del Convento de la Misericordia en Downpatrick, la comunidad decidió que era el tiempo apropiado para referir el cincture al Centro Internacional de la Misericordia, calle de Baggot, Dublín donde la familia mundial de la Misericordia pueda tener acceso a él.

En una ceremonia especial en Downpatrick el domingo 19 de junio, el cincture fue dado a la Hermana Breege O'Neill, Líder de la Congregación de las Hermanas de la Misericordia, quien lo acepto a nombre de La Congregación. En un ritual simple el lunes 20 de junio en el Centro Internacional de la Misericordia, la Hermana Rosie Carroll, Directora, a nombre de las Hermanas de la Misericordia a nivel mundial, aceptó el cincture. Este fue puesto en la sección de 'herencia' del Centro Internacional de la Misericordia, donde ahora está en exhibición junto al anillo de Catherine McAuley.

Mande sus mensajes a la Coordinadora de Comunicaciones, la Hermana Ailish O'Brien.

Catherine’s letters return home

At an International Mercy archivist meeting in November 2003 at Mercy International Centre Sister Edel Bannon revealed a personal dream. She said, “Now that there is a state-of-the-art heritage centre here in Catherine’s own house, it seems to me that all these precious items belonging to Catherine rightly belong in her own house, where they belong to every Sister of Mercy equally and can be viewed by sisters from around the world.”

The Institute Leadership Team, reflecting on those words, made a decision which will begin the fulfillment of this dream — to return to Catherine’s house the 62 letters of Catherine McAuley which are currently held in the Institute archives. Seven regional communities have also added to this gift of letters held in their archives.

At the beginning of the solemn ritual of transfer, Sister Sheila Carney (ILT) said, “Catherine’s letters have been with us though these days of Chapter. Her words and spirit have accompanied us. We now return them, for all our Sisters in Mercy, and the world — to be inspired and accompanied by Catherine’s own words.”

A small chest containing these letters was presented by Sister Marie Chin (ILT) to Sister Evelyn Gallagher from Mercy International Association. After accepting the awsome charge of transporting this gift, Evelyn said, “The letters will be welcomed at Baggot Street in ritual.”

Sister Evelyn Gallagher, left, and Sister Marie Chin (ILC) with the small chest containing Catherine McAuley’s letters.

Messages to Anne Boyle Institute Communications Director

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