Please find in the link below a message from Sister Anna as we celebrate the feast day of Saint Louise de Marillac, the patron saint of our school.
|Saint Louise de Marillac – 1593-1660 |
Happy feast day – Saturday May 9th
Have an enjoyable day – Sister Anna DC
Why is Saint Louise important? Our school is called after her. We refer to her as our patron saint- the special person who can speak to God for us-if we ask! A saint is someone who makes a significant impact on the lives of people during their lifetime. The church honours them by calling them saint and giving them a special day on the calendar, e.g. March 17th for Patrick.
Who was Louise? She was born and lived all her life in the city of Paris. Her parents were not married, she did not know her mother but her father took care of her to the extent that he paid for her education – unusual for girls at the time. She was married and had one son called Michel. After the death of her husband she set up groups to support people in need in Paris e.g. the homeless. One of the groups she started was the Daughters of Charity- of which I am a member
Why was our school called after a French woman? Because it was started by two Daughters of Charity. After Louise’s death the number of sisters grew and spread all over Europe- some came to Belfast in 1900. In 1958, two sisters called Ita and Genevieve started a non-fee paying school for girls, whose parents could not afford to send them to a grammar school. They chose the name because Louise had a special interest in the education of young people- whose parents were not well-off. It was the first school for girls of its kind in West Belfast.
What was special about Saint Louise? Although she was less than five feet, she was a strong and determined woman. Her strength came from the conviction that God called her to care for the many people who were in need in Paris at the time. The many groups that survive, nearly 400 years after her death, give testimony to her organisational skills- her impact lives on to our day.
What was Saint Louise’s passion? To serve people in need always ensuring that their dignity was upheld. The icon of Louise at the top of the page attempts to depict how ‘service’ was what she was about. Service is a principal value in our College today and underpins everything we try do for the college community.