T H E S I S T E R S O F S T. J O S E P H O F O R A N G E C E L E B R AT E 1 0 0 Y E A R S O F S E RV I N G T H E D E A R N E I G H B O R
Thee year 1912 was a year of many beginnings. One hundred years ago, a number of events, births and inventions occurred that have shaped and changed our lives — the Girl Scouts were founded; the zipper, the OREO® Cookie and LifeSavers® were created; the Titanic was launched (and sank); and Julia Child, a famous chef, and Gene Kelly, an actor and dancer, were born in 1912. That year, another beginning occurred that has shaped and changed the landscape and lives of many in Orange County and beyond. A small group of Catholic Sisters arrived in California and established the Sisters of St. Joseph of Orange. This year marks a century of caring and collaboration by this Congregation of Sisters, who have devoted their lives to working with others in the community to “care for the dear neighbor.”
A CENTURY OF
Caring & Collaboration The Sisters of St. Joseph of Orange are celebrating their 100th Jubilee with a spirit of thankfulness, reflection and continued commitment to their mission and ministries. As a way of commemorating and honoring their dedication to spreading the love of God and collaborating to meet the needs of His people on this 100th Jubilee, please enjoy reading a history of the Sisters and the impact of their work in our communities.
Mother Bernard Gosselin and seven Sisters arrive in Eureka.
The Sisters purchase and open their ﬁrst hospital, St. Joseph Hospital, in Eureka.
1912 - 1922
The Sisters move their Motherhouse to Orange.
HISTORY OF THE
Sisters of St. Joseph of Orange
A Founding from France to the West Coast of America
“Go West, young man”… and woman!
It all started with a small group of Sisters, led by a visionary Sister with a pioneering spirit, Mother Bernard Gosselin, who arrived in Eureka, Calif. from La Grange, Ill., in June 1912 to establish a school. Mother Bernard took the initiative to respond to a letter from the Bishop of Sacramento and accepted the invitation to establish a convent and Catholic school to meet the needs of the population in Northern California. They were assigned to Eureka and the Sisters of St. Joseph Congregation was established when Mother Bernard and seven Sisters arrived by train and boat, with scarce resources. Within a few months, they had established a home for themselves and successfully started an elementary school.
This beginning mirrors the tradition of the founding of the Sisters of St. Joseph centuries earlier in Le Puy, France, when a Jesuit Priest, Father Jean-Pierre Medaille, formed a new religious Congregation of women who were among the first to step out from the traditional cloistered life. They were to carry out the mission of unity and reconciliation by serving in the community. He encouraged the Sisters to go into the city, divide up the neighborhoods, assess the needs and do their best to meet them, engaging others to do the good works with them. After the French Revolution, the Sisters were suppressed, imprisoned and even executed because of the Church’s ties to the ousted King. The Congregation reassembled and quickly moved out across the country. One such group established itself in La Grange, Ill., outside of Chicago.
More than 2,000 people stand proudly in the rain to see the opening of St. Jude Hospital in Fullerton.
The Sisters purchase and open St. Joseph Hospital in Orange.
1929 - 1950
A CENTURY OF
Caring & Collaboration health care and social services, as well as the need to attract other women to join the Sisters. With a bank loan in hand, Mother Bernard later purchased the Burnham Estate, an empty mansion in Orange, surrounded by acres of orange trees. They officially became known as the Sisters of St. Joseph of Orange, and even found themselves in the orange-growing business, using the funds to support their work.
Moving to Orange County
Mother Bernard encouraged the Sisters to meet the needs of the community, as have the leaders of the Congregation who followed her. As the Congregation grew, the Sisters were better able to address the needs of the Eureka area. The 1918 flu epidemic took the In the decades that followed, the Sisters out of the classroom and “Responsiveness to the needs of our dear Sisters earned a reputation for into homes to care for the sick. neighbors is a consistent aspect of our history.” excellence in medical care and Demonstrating faith, foresight education, leading to invitations and flexibility, the Sisters to open schools and hospitals exchanged a gift of timberland across Northern California, to buy a closed hospital in town, Southern California and Texas. recognizing the community’s Significant growth occurred, not urgent need for medical care. In 1920, they opened their first hospital, only in their numbers, but in different locations and ministries of the St. Joseph Hospital, Eureka, extending their ministry into health care. Sisters. By the late 1970s, the Sisters were redefining their ministries to “Responsiveness to the needs of our dear neighbors is a consistent respond to the changing needs of the times. In addition to education aspect of our history,” says Sr. Katherine Gray, immediate past General and health, their work has extended to justice, social services and Superior for the Sisters of St. Joseph of Orange. spirituality. The Sisters’ ministries currently include services such as: assisting new immigrants; feeding the hungry; giving shelter to In 1922, with the blessing of Bishop Cantwell of Los Angeles, the homeless and abused women; providing skills and training to young Sisters moved their Motherhouse (the name for the main convent of Hispanic adults; and fostering spiritual development. These ministries the Congregation) to Orange, Calif., in anticipation of strong growth have taken them from the poorest parts of Santa Ana, Calif., to the in Southern California and the corresponding need for education, fields in El Salvador and the villages of Papau, New Guinea.
The Sisters establish a health system, which later becomes St. Joseph Health, serving communities in Northern California, Southern California and west Texas/ eastern New Mexico.
Recognizing the importance of physician hospital integration, St. Joseph Heritage Healthcare is developed to support medical groups and affiliated physician models.
Sisters acquire Mission Hospital in Mission Viejo.
1981 - 1994
What is a
A Jubilee is a special time of celebration, with a rich spiritual significance. In the Old Testament of the Bible, the Jubilee year occurs every 50th year and is a celebration of gratitude, justice and restoration, when debts were forgiven and slaves were freed. For the Sisters of St. Joseph of Orange, the 100th year Jubilee is a year of thanksgiving and celebration, of reconciliation and restoration, of selfless love and service to the dear neighbor and to the world. It is a time to celebrate God’s abundant love expressed within and through the Congregation. It is also a time of reflection and deep gratitude for the many people who have touched the lives of the Sisters and supported them with gifts and talents. The theme of the Sisters’ 100th Jubilee is “Honoring the Past, Celebrating the Present, Embracing the Future,” which reflects the six areas of focus of the Jubilee (shown in the visual above). In addition, in each community they serve, celebrations have been planned to express thanks and gratitude for community support and collaboration in their ministries.
Strength in Collaboration Since their arrival in 1922, the Sisters have reached out across Orange County to bring about unity and reconciliation by responding to the needs in the neighborhoods. Along with others, they have taught the deaf, assisted those in prison, provided release-time religious education, and visited the sick in their homes. In the ensuing years, they established the Pilgrimage Psychotherapy Center, Casita de San Jose to care for foster children, and St. Joseph Ballet (now called the Wooden Floor) for the children of Santa Ana. The Sisters continue to collaborate with those of like mission and values, including S.O.S. Clinic, Mary’s Kitchen, Habitat for Humanity, Catholic Charities, Casa Teresa and the de Lestonnac Clinic. “We are so thankful for the many people who have partnered with us to make the world a better place,” says Sr. Jayne Helmlinger, General Superior. As the Sisters celebrate their 100th Jubilee, they look forward to a future of continued collaboration in service to God and the community. “The expression of our ministry has changed over the decades, because the needs have changed,” says Sr. Suzanne Sassus, chair of the St. Joseph Health Ministry and past General Superior of the Congregation. “Yet, why and how we have responded is as relevant and consistent today as it was 100 years ago.”
Over the past 100 years, the Sisters of St. Joseph of Orange have made a profound impact on our communities and are celebrating their 100th Jubilee.
Mission Hospital acquires South Coast Medical Center, now known as Mission Hospital Laguna Beach.
2009 - 2012
A CENTURY OF MEETING The impact of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Orange has been deep and lasting over the last century in Orange County, similar to the roots of the orange trees that once lined the roads. Although their presence has extended far beyond the borders of Orange County, the Sisters’ local ministries have touched thousands of lives. These ministries all share one common thread: responding to unmet needs with bold faith while engaging others to assist in improving the overall well-being of the community. “As we celebrate this 100th Jubilee, we express deep gratitude to the people of Orange County who have joined with us, side-by-side, to serve others,” says Sr. Jayne Helmlinger, General Superior of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Orange. As not-for-profit organizations, the longevity of the mission of each ministry has been dependent on the generosity of donors, volunteers and the contributions of time and talent by board members. The success of each ministry has also been achieved thanks to the many wonderful employees who dedicate their passion and energy to the job of helping others on a daily basis. While the Sisters are involved in many organizations across Orange County, here are a few that have had impact on the community and demonstrate the depth of the Sisters’ presence here.
Bethany — Assisting Women in Transition Recognizing the immense need and shortage of transitional centers in Orange County, the Sisters opened up their own home in 1997 to provide transitional housing and support services for homeless and abused women. By converting a portion of the Motherhouse, Bethany was born. Bethany provides services for women who have often reached the 30-60 day limit of a homeless shelter, but still lack the necessary income and emotional stability to find housing.
Bethany staff Sr. Louise Ann Micek, who founded the program and serves as its director, envisioned Bethany as a safe and supportive place to guide, challenge and empower women in transition to achieve independent living and self-sufficiency. Residents can stay up to 12 months and receive support through case management, career guidance, life classes and financial management, in addition to room and board. Bethany has helped 185 women in the last 15 years transform their lives, setting them on the path to a better future. Ninety percent of the program’s graduates have remained self-sufficient. “Bethany was the turning point for me,” says Melissa, a past resident. “The Bethany staff believed in me until I learned to believe in myself. I would not be who I am today had it not been for the Bethany program. The staff are God’s angels.”
“Before I came to Taller San Jose, I was on the verge of losing everything. Taller helped me flip everything around and get my life back together. It feels good coming home from work every day. I’m living proof that second chances work.” - Alan, Construction Laborer, earning $12.50 per hour
Taller San Jose In the spirit of assessing community needs, four Sisters moved into a gang-ridden neighborhood in central Santa Ana to better understand the issues and challenges facing the community in 1995. What they heard were gunshots at night and the wailing of mothers losing children to violence; they saw young Hispanic adults loitering on street corners with no jobs or hope. Out of this experience, Sr. Eileen McNerney had a vision of a program to help troubled young people develop job skills for a brighter future and employment at a living wage. By bringing together sponsors representing local government, churches, corporations, foundations and private individuals, Sr. Eileen opened an educational and job-training center in downtown Santa Ana – Taller San Jose. In Spanish, “taller” means workshop, a place to build and repair things, and “San Jose” is Spanish for St. Joseph, the patron of workers. Since 1995, Taller San Jose has given more than 4,500 young adults hope and a new start in a productive life. Almost 70 percent of students remain employed one year after graduation, and more than 90 percent of those with a prior criminal record remain jail and drug free. Today, Taller San Jose offers job training programs for students aged 18-28. The 16-week training programs simulate a real work environment; students must show up every day, on time and drug free to earn a weekly stipend. Support and workshops to gain life-skills are also provided. “Each young person, no matter what his or her history, is precious in God’s sight, yet many of them are scared, stuck or broken,” says Sr. Eileen, who has published several books, including a book of student poetry and one of the Taller San Jose story.
CSJ Educational Network Continuing its long history and tradition in the education ministry, the Sisters of St. Joseph of Orange created the CSJ Educational Network in 1988 as a way to continue to support the philosophy of Catholic education in the face of a diminishing number of Sisters serving in the classroom. The Educational Network, under the direction of Sr. Judith Dugan, offers services to a network of more than 20 Catholic elementary schools throughout the state of California. It provides a forum for collaboration and support for principals, teachers and staff in the areas of leadership and professional development, formation of faculty and curriculum development through workshops, grants and online resources. A ministerial formation program is also provided to strengthen the knowledge and skills of faculty in Catholic identity. “Catholic education remains critical and, through the CSJ Educational Network, together we participate in the teaching mission of Jesus with renewed zeal and joy,” says Sr. Judith.
Center for Spiritual Development Throughout their history, the Sisters have continued their tradition of sharing their spiritual vision with the laity in all their works. From 1986 until 2012, they focused this ministry through the Center for Spiritual Development, located on the Motherhouse grounds. It was an oasis in the center of Orange County that provided conferences, retreats, spiritual direction or simply a place for quiet prayer for thousands of people of all faiths. Though the Center closed this year, its popular three-year program, “The Art of Spiritual Direction,” in collaboration with Loyola Marymount University, continues to help with the development of spiritual directors of all faiths.
Sisters of St. Joseph Justice Center The Sisters’ commitment to serving the needs of their neighbors extends beyond addressing personal and local sufferings to attending to national and global issues of justice. Their approach of building awareness and working to alleviate the structural causes of injustice has involved the Sisters in many new works. These include promotion of peaceful relationships, prevention of human trafficking, promoting ecological justice, ministries in developing countries, educating themselves and others to reduce religious and ethnic prejudice, and use of their own resources in socially responsible investments and financial and personnel contributions to other organizations that promote charity and justice.
Soon after their move from Eureka to Orange County in 1922, the Sisters of St. Joseph of Orange opened the 90-bed St. Joseph Hospital to meet the health care needs of their new community. From these humble beginnings, no one could have predicted that the Sisters would go on to sponsor St. Joseph Health — an integrated health care delivery system consisting of 14 acute care hospitals, outpatient services, skilled nursing facilities, community clinics and physician organizations. The system also offers a Home Health Agency that provides specialized services for Orange County’s adult population who require intermittent care in their home for a variety of needs: palliative care, hospice, infusion pharmacy and private duty nursing. Guided by the core values of Dignity, Service, Excellence and Justice and a mission of “extending the healing ministry of Jesus in the tradition of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Orange,” St. Joseph Health has extended its healing ministry to communities in Southern California, Northern California, New Mexico and Texas. Three of the most respected and technologically advanced hospitals in Orange County are part of St. Joseph Health: St. Joseph Hospital in Orange, St. Jude Medical Center in Fullerton, and Mission Hospital in Mission Viejo and Laguna Beach. These are their stories.
THREE ORANGE COUNTY
St. Joseph Hospital, Orange St. Joseph Hospital opened on Sept. 16, 1929, with a medical staff of fewer than 50 and Sisters serving in nearly every other role. As the 1930s progressed and the hospital grew, the Sisters brought in lay nurses, doctors and other professionals. With rapid growth after World War II, the patient census tripled by 1960. By that point, St. Joseph Hospital had delivered more than 40,000 babies and the Sisters embarked on building a new hospital that opened in 1964. Medical advancements in the 1980s allowed for a more dignified approach to cancer care. During this time, the hospital opened the regional cancer center and performed the county’s first adult bone marrow transplant. To reach out to communities in need, the Sisters opened La Amistad de Jose Family Health Center in Garden Grove and later in Buena Clinton — one of the poorest neighborhoods in Santa Ana at that time. As the county’s population grew in the 1990s, the hospital earned the nickname “Baby Capital of Orange County,” with nearly 5,000 births a year. That same year, the Sisters expanded their outreach into the poorest neighborhoods by rolling out three mobile health vans. In July 2007, the hospital received national attention when it was recognized as one of America’s best hospitals for orthopedic care by US News & World Report, which also ranks St. Joseph Hospital as one of the top hospitals in Orange County. That same year, the hospital achieved Magnet status—the first Catholic hospital in California awarded this prestigous designation for nursing excellence. Today, St. Joseph Hospital’s reputation for clinical excellence and compassionate, family-centered care draws patients from all over the United States. It is home to more than 75 specialty programs, including The Center for Cancer Prevention and Treatment, the Heart and Vascular Center and a nationally acclaimed orthopedics program. Over its 88 years of providing health care, St. Joseph Hospital has cared for people through more than 1.2 million patients visits. Equally important is St. Joseph Hospital’s dedication to caring for the medically underserved through health education programs, a free-standing medical and dental clinic, and mobile health vans.
St. Jude Medical Center, Fullerton In 1931, the Sisters of St. Joseph of Orange purchased Fullerton General Hospital for $23,000. But over time, the Sisters became frustrated by the limitations of the aging facility. Unable to deliver the high standard of care they were committed to, they closed it and went to the community for help in building a new hospital, one that would allow them to fulfill their mission of service and compassion in a more powerful way. With the support of local physicians and business leaders, fundraising to build the hospital became a community-wide effort. In six short months, $750,000 was raised and construction began in 1953. On May 15, 1957, several thousand community members stood proudly in the rain to see the opening of the new St. Jude Medical Center. When the doors opened the Sisters could be found on every floor. At the helm was Sr. Jane Francis Powell — a woman of indomitable spirit and commitment, who served as president during St. Jude’s first 30 years. With a no-nonsense demeanor and enormous talent, her passion to serve the dear neighbor was legendary. Within days of opening, every bed was filled. New hospital wings were added in September 1962 and 1971 — doubling the hospital’s capacity. In 2009, thanks to more than $52 million in contributions, St. Jude’s state-of-the-art Southwest Tower opened with a new emergency department, neonatal intensive care unit and private birthing suites. Construction is currently underway on a state-of-the-art patient tower set to open in fall 2014. The new tower will create one of Southern California’s most advanced patient care environments. What began as a small community hospital has grown into one of the state’s most respected facilities. Simple care and compassion have evolved into nationally-recognized programs and services. And what was initially a handful of committed doctors has grown to more than 700 physicians in virtually every specialty, from highly respected orthopedic surgeons to cardiologists performing today’s most sophisticated, life-saving procedures. St. Jude Medical Center has also created a network of partnerships and services to care for the most vulnerable. The St. Jude Neighborhood Health Center offers comprehensive outpatient care to hundreds of uninsured families. The St. Jude Dental Clinic, Mobile Health Clinics, and nearly a dozen other initiatives are part of St. Jude’s continuing mission to reach beyond its walls and improve the health and quality of life of the communities it serves.
Mission Hospital, Mission Viejo and Laguna Beach In 1994, the Sisters of St. Joseph of Orange saw a need to have a presence in South Orange County, and Mission Hospital, a physician-owned community hospital, was looking to join a large health system. The Sisters embraced the opportunity to expand their health care ministry and respond to the increasing needs of the underserved in the area. In 1994, the Sisters became the official sponsors of Mission Hospital.
In 2009, a new patient tower opened that increased the hospital’s acute care capacity, while providing a healing garden and chapel for prayer and reflection. That same year, Mission Hospital expanded its presence in South Orange County with the acquisition of South Coast Medical Center, now known as Mission Hospital Laguna Beach. Operating under one license, Mission Hospital now has two campuses.
Today, Mission Hospital remains committed to the highest standards of excellence in the delivery of care and ministry to the whole person — body, mind and spirit. When a medical emergency occurs, Mission Hospital is well equipped to serve the community as a Level II trauma facility with advanced treatment options to address the most critical cases. Partnering with CHOC Children’s, Mission Hospital built a facility specially designed for children; CHOC Children’s at Mission is the only pediatric hospital for families in South Orange County.
The Sisters provided important servant leadership during the transition of an acute care facility to a multi-faceted healing ministry. In their spirit, Mission Hospital maintains its dedication to serving its community and reaching out to help those most vulnerable. For example, it sponsors Camino Health Center — a community clinic providing affordable, quality primary medical and dental care. Last year, Camino Health Center conducted 113,404 visits and served more than 3,000 patients. Mission Hospital also serves as a leading member of two family resource centers in South Orange County that provide education and support to low-income families.
Faith, Foresight & Flexibility For nearly 85 years, the three Orange County hospitals sponsored by the Sisters of St. Joseph of Orange have seen tremendous growth and change, but their dedication to the mission always remains the same — to continue the healing ministry of Jesus in the tradition of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Orange by continually improving the health and quality of life of people in the communities we serve. While the future promises to bring growth and advancements, the Sisters’ faithful service to others and to God continue to inspire our doctors, nurses and staff to go beyond curing illness — and touch lives.
A Joyous Jubilee In gratitude for their 100 years of generous service, St. Joseph Health presented a monument featuring the pioneer Sisters, which was unveiled during their joyous 100th Jubilee celebration in Eureka, Calif.
SISTERS’ CALLING TO SERVE NEIGHBORS PROVIDES $200 MILLION FOR COMMUNITY GROUPS St. Joseph Health Foundation Celebrates 25 Years of Partnering to Build Healthy Communities From the beginning, the Sisters of St. Joseph of Orange embraced their calling to serve their dear neighbors beyond the walls of health care facilities. With their formation of the St. Joseph Health Foundation, this organization dedicated to improving the health and well-being of underserved populations ultimately led to giving more than $200 million to nonprofit organizations in the past 25 years. “It was a natural step for us to begin a grant-making foundation. Helping the poor has always been the key to what we’re doing,” says Sr. Suzanne Sassus, chair of the St. Joseph Health Ministry and past General Superior of the Congregation. “As part of our outreach to serving those in need, from the beginning the health system dedicated 10 percent of its net profits to the foundation, and this commitment continues today.”
“It was a natural step for us to begin a grantmaking foundation. Helping the poor has always been the key to what we’re doing.” - Sr. Suzanne Sassus
Today the foundation supports more than 75 community organizations annually. AccessOC is an organization that partners with nonprofit hospitals — including St. Joseph Hospital, St. Jude Medical Center and Mission Hospital — to mobilize medical volunteers to provide free outpatient surgeries to low-income, uninsured patients. The foundation provided AccessOC with a $40,000 grant this year, in addition to a $37,500 grant from the Sisters of St. Joseph Health Care Foundation. “Since 2007, Access OC has provided more than 420 surgeries — or $5.5 million in donated care — to the Orange County community,” says Ericka Waidley, AccessOC executive director. “We are grateful for the funding we receive from the St. Joseph Health Foundation because it helps to support our operating costs so that we can continue to fulfill our mission and service to the community.”
Other key philanthropic efforts include: •
Supporting more than 250,000 visits to community clinics and mobile medical vans for people needing medical and dental care.
Assisting organizations such as Catholic Charities of Orange County, Share Our Selves and the Friendship Shelter to provide direct delivery of emergency or basic needs services.
Providing disaster relief aid to places in need such as Haiti, Japan, El Salvador, Guatemala, Lebanon and Pakistan.
Supporting the development of resident-based capacity to make positive change in low-income communities. An example of funded programs includes the Community Action Parternship of Orange County’s efforts to develop programs to address the high prevalence of obesity.
Offering health insurance for uninsured children through the Children’s Health Initiative of Orange County.
“We look at the physical, spiritual and mental health of our communities, and look for ways to help,” says Gabriela Robles, executive director of the SJH Foundation. “We partner with likeminded organizations to provide funds, education and tools that will carry them into the future and allow them to further their mission of serving our communities.”
For more information about the SJH Foundation, visit www.stjoe.org/SJH-Programs/SJH-Foundation.
MOVING TO THE FUTURE WITH
Faith, Foresight Congratulations to the Sisters of St. Joseph of Orange as we celebrate your 100th Jubilee. On behalf of St. Joseph Health, we extend our sincere gratitude and thanks for your tremendous impact, hard work and faithful service that has positively affected the lives of thousands of Orange County residents over the decades. I know that the legacy of the Sisters’ service to our community will continue to make a positive impact on peoples’ lives for generations to come. While much has occurred since the Sisters’ founding in 17th century France, Father Medaille’s message of joining with others in charitable service to our neighbors remains at the center of all we do at St. Joseph Health. Through the years, we have always actively sought to join with others to be of service to our neighbors. Twenty first century America is decidedly different from seventeenth century France. And yet, the solutions we find for some of our most difficult challenges are remarkably similar: Community. Partnership. Faith. Foresight. Flexibility. The health needs of our communities call for us to recognize that we cannot face our future alone. We must build new partnerships and seek like-minded partners that will help us build a continuum of care to better serve our communities. Our future partners must also share our commitment to mission and community. We thank God for the inspiration of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Orange and the people of St. Joseph Health for their dedication both now and in the years ahead.
Flexibility A look forward with General Superior Sr. Jayne Helmlinger, Sisters of St. Joseph of Orange Sr. Jayne Helmlinger has been a Sister of St. Joseph of Orange for more than 25 years and was elected to serve as General Superior of the Sisters of St. Joseph from 2011-2016. Prior to her election, Sr. Jayne served vice president roles at St. Joseph Health, St. Jude Medical Center and St. Joseph Hospital in Orange.
Q. As a Congregation, what contributions are you most proud of? A. I’m most proud of the faithful response of “Yes” to God’s call from our Sisters over the past 100 years. The fidelity to our mission of bringing all people into union with God and with one another, serving the dear neighbor with integrity, passion and commitment, is inspiring and profound. We’ve followed our call to undertake all spiritual and corporal works of mercy within our capabilities, responding to the needs of the people in the communities we serve. In Orange County, our footprints within the ministries of spirituality, health care, education and social services run deep and will continue well into the future.
Q. What do the Sisters of St. Joseph of Orange hope to pass on to future generations? A. In our ministries of education and health care, we’ve placed a strong emphasis on formation. It’s more than providing excellent education for students and health care for people who are sick; we are a part of these works of mercy because we’re continuing Jesus’ mission of educating and healing. Having those we partner with embrace this same motivation behind their work is vital if these efforts are to continue into the future.
Q. What are the future priorities of the Sisters? Deborah Proctor President and CEO St. Joseph Health
Deborah Proctor is president and chief executive officer of St. Joseph Health, one of the nation’s top Catholic health systems with more than 24,000 dedicated employees serving communities within Northern California, Southern California and West Texas/Eastern New Mexico. Proctor was recognized in 2011 by ModernHealthcare as one of the Top 25 Women in Healthcare and as one of the Top Women Hospital and Health Care Leaders to Know.
A. Since the first Sisters of St. Joseph were founded in 1650 France, we have joined with like-minded people to work together to meet the needs of the community. Doing it alone is not the way of our past and is not the plan for our future. I am excited about the possibilities for the future. We will continue to place emphasis on inviting others to join and lead ministries to meet the urgent needs that arise. We will continue to look to the future as Mother Bernard and our first Sisters did 100 years ago – with bold faith, foresight and flexibility – responding to God’s call as life unfolds before us.
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