May 29, 2006

Weavers of the Tapestry

Sister Kathrine Bellamy of the Sisters of Mercy of Newfoundland has been making local headlines for the past few weeks.

A headline in the May 21 edition of The Telegram reads: 'Nuns’ story told in big book: Sister Kathrine Bellamy chronicles the history of the Sisters of Mercy'. Accompanying this headline is a wonderful photo of Kathrine holding her book, Weavers of the Tapestry.

On May 13, after six years of scouring the provincial archives and public libraries as well as the congregational and episcopal archives and other textual and oral sources at home, in Ireland and in England and in cyberspace, Kathrine’s book was launched. Published by Flanker Press in St. John’s, the 963 page book has been selling rapidly. Sister Kathrine has attending a number of book-signing events and has appeared on local radio and television. In explaining how she was inspired to title her book she reflects that “we’ve been weaving a tapestry of mercy all our lives. Each individual sister has woven the tapestry, we are both the weavers and the threads. The person and ministry of each Sister of Mercy represents a thread in the tapestry.” Kathrine explains that her book is a history but it is more a narrative than cold facts; it is telling a story about people rather than events, the people who sent the events in motion.

Sister Kathrine has made local headlines for another and unrelated reason. On May 24 she will be honored at the Spring Convocation of Memorial University of Newfoundland with an Honorary Doctor of Laws Degree in recognition of her contribution to choral music in Newfoundland and Labrador. A special contribution to the Convocation events will be a choral performance by over sixty women who were once members of Kathrine’s award-winning choir, Our Lady of Mercy School Glee Club of the early 1960s. After all these years Kathrine will have the great joy of conducting “her girls”, some of whom are now professional singers and musicians.

Sister Kathrine’s religious community and her family and associates are delighted with and proud of these major events that honor and celebrate Kathrine’s dedicated commitment to the Congregation, to the poor, to her ministry in the church and, especially in church music, and to the many people, young and older, with whom she shared her love and gift for music and song.


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