December 03, 2006

Sister of Mercy Honored

On November 26, 2006, a Mass of Thanksgiving was celebrated in the chapel of St. Clare’s Mercy Hospital, St. John’s, NL to celebrate the 90th birthday of Sister Mary Fabian Hennebury. The celebration was organized by St. Clare’s Mercy Hospital School of Nursing Alumnae Association whose members had been co-workers of Sister Mary Fabian during her ministry at the hospital. The Alumnae used the occasion of her birthday not only to wish her well on this milestone in her life journey but also to express appreciation for her significant contribution to the hospital and to the wider community.


Sister Mary Fabian had been in ministry at St. Clare’s Mercy Hospital in St. John’s for forty-two years serving first in the pediatrics department, and later as administrator of the hospital for twenty-five years. During that time she oversaw two extensions to the hospital so that it became an up-to-date, modern facility and introduced a number of new programs including hospital accreditation, physio and respiratory services, a rheumatology unit, a residential detoxification center, a palliative care unit and a pastoral care department.

Following the Liturgy of the Eucharist, a reception was held in the cafeteria of the hospital where almost 250 people gathered to wish Sister Mary Fabian well. Although a number of her former colleagues availed of the opportunity to acknowledge her achievements, most touching were the tributes recognizing her kind and gentle manner, her sensitivity to people’s needs, her care and compassion to the less fortunate and her commitment and dedication to the mission of St. Clare’s Mercy Hospital in its care for the sick and suffering.

Sister Mary Fabian retired from St. Clare’s Mercy Hospital in 1981. In recognition of her contribution to health care, she had received a number of awards, including the Performance Citation Award from the Catholic Health Association of Canada, the Queen’s Silver and Golden Jubilee Medals; Sister Mary Fabian received the Order of Canada in 1984.

Messages to Madonna Gatherall rsm

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