Quite a path…

Tribute A visionary woman

Quite a path…

October 6, 1811 Birth of Eulalie Durocher in Saint-Antoine-sur-Richelieu, Quebec (Canada)
September 21, 1821 Eulalie Durocher leaves her home for the first time for the CND boarding school in Saint-Denis-sur-Richelieu to pursue her education and begin her formal training for First Communion and Confirmation.
1823 Eulalie returns to the family home where she assists her mother in the management of the house.
October 1, 1827 Eulalie goes to study at the CND Convent in Montreal where her sister Séraphine has been following her formation since 1825. The latter becomes a novice in 1827.
1829 Often ill, Eulalie must return to the family home without being able to follow her call to religious life.
1830 Her mother Geneviève dies. Eulalie is appointed by the members of the family as mistress of the house and hostess for the always numerous guests.
1831-1843 Appointed parish priest in Beloeil, her brother Théophile asks his father and Eulalie to join him in the rectory. From then on, Eulalie acted as housekeeper and assistant to her brother, the parish priest who took care of the parishes of Beloeil and Mont-Saint-Hilaire. These 12 years prepared Eulalie to respond to the needs of the community and ultimately to found a religious congregation in response to a call from God.
May 26, 1842 Father Pierre-Adrien Telmon presides over the canonical erection of the first Congregation of the Children of Mary in Canada. Eulalie Durocher was the first president elected.

Despite the negative comments of some people, including her brother, the parish priest, this initiative was a great success with young people and women. The congregation emphasizes the spiritual life of its members and their commitment. From that time on, Eulalie firmly believed that by educating young girls, future mothers, they would transform their families, which in turn would influence society.

1840-1841 Eulalie Durocher responds to the call of Bishop Ignace Bourget by organizing several activities in connection with the closing event of the Great Mission, planned on Mont-Saint-Hilaire on October 6, 1841. This vast project of mass evangelization called “Great Mission” was an initiative of the Catholic Church which wanted to face a decline in faith among the population.

The event aroused the fervor of many people whose faith was renewed. The Great Mission also has a double impact. First of all, Bishop Bourget discovered Eulalie’s real leadership talents. Then, it was during this major event that Eulalie and Mélodie met Hedwidge Davignon who became the first young woman to join the three founders of the new congregation.

October 28, 1843 Eulalie Durocher and Mélodie Dufresne leave Beloeil to join Henriette Céré and found together the congregation of the Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary (SNJM).
November 1, 1843 The three foundresses begin their postulancy. They begin their formation while taking care of the education of young people at the parish school, now known as the “Foundation House”.
February 28, 1844 A ceremony presided over by Bishop Bourget marks an important step for the three postulants: Eulalie, Mélodie and Henriette. They received their religious habit and became novices. They then took their religious names:

Eulalie Durocher (Mother Marie-Rose)

Mélodie Dufresne (Mother Marie-Agnès)

Henriette Céré (Mother Marie-Madeleine)

During his homily, Bishop Bourget emphasized the spirituality of the new institute: to walk in the footsteps of Jesus and Mary.

August 9, 1844 The young SNJM community leaves the Foundation House for the convent in Longueuil, which has since become the Congregational House. After Mass on Sunday, August 4, a procession from the church to the convent began with Mother Marie-Rose carrying the cross, followed by the students, postulants, novices, priests and Bishop Bourget. A ceremony of blessing from one room to another to pray to God to grant this place the abundance of His grace, brings to life a ritual in preparation for the move on August 9.
December 8, 1844 Historic day when the three founders of the Congregation of the Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary (SNJM) pronounced their first vows.

On this occasion, Bishop Ignace Bourget, under the pontificate of Pope Gregory XVI, publicly underlines the canonical erection of the congregation.

August 15, 1846 Mother Marie-Rose, Marie-Madeleine and Marie-Agnès pronounce their perpetual vows in company of Véronique-du-Crucifix and Thérèse-de-Jésus.
September 14, 1847 Inauguration of the chapel of the Convent of Longueuil. After some renovations, it is still accessible to the public (visits by appointment only).
April 29, 1849 Mother Marie-Rose makes a special act of consecration to the Virgin Mary.
October 6, 1849 Death of Mother Marie-Rose in Longueuil. At that time, the congregation had 30 professed sisters, 7 novices and 7 candidates and three school convents in Beloeil, Saint-Timothée and Saint-Lin. In less than six years as superior, Mother Marie-Rose saw her dream of having two or three sisters in villages lacking schools become a reality.
October 31, 1925 Transfer of the remains of Mother Marie-Rose from Longueuil to the new Mother House, located in Outremont.
July 13, 1979 Decree on the heroic virtues of Mother Marie-Rose, later declared Venerable.
May 23, 1982 Pope John Paul II declares Mother Marie-Rose blessed under the name of Blessed Marie-Rose Durocher.
2004 The remains of the foundress rest in a tomb located in the Marie-Rose Chapel in the right transept of the Saint-Antoine-de-Padoue Co-Cathedral in Longueuil.

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