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Messages Received: 2008

I have just got a computer and would like to send my love and best wishes for the chapter. God bless you all,
Margaret Feely

Agli esercizi spirituali a San Mauro Torinese, ho trovato il bel libro di P. Grogan su Marie Madeleine Victoire de Bengy, donna che mi ha molto colpito sotto tanti aspetti. Soprattutto, ho trovato un'immaginetta in cui si invita a pregare per ottenere una grazia di guarigione, cosa che ho subito iniziato a fare. Grazie per questo nuovo ascensore per il Cielo. ["At the Spiritual Exercises at San Mauro, I found the lovely book by P. Grogan on Marie Madeleine Victoire de Bengy, a woman who impressed me in several ways. Above all, I found a little  image  in which one is invited to prayer to obtain the grace of healing and I immediately began to do this. Thank you for this new lift towards heaven.}
Vittoria Vassalo

I'd like to add to the FCJ's Visitors' Book: I was a student at The Montjoie Institute in Brussels, Belgium, from September 1958 until I graduated in June 1967, where I spent the most wonderful years because of the spirit and ambiance of the school. I cannot but still admire the charisma of the many nuns I got to know over the years and still have the greatest admiration for them and the work they did. I remember our Mother Superior Mother Mary Gerard as an outstanding religious person, was fortunate to have Mother Mary John as both English language and religious education teacher, remember well Mother  Fidelis, Mère Marie Jeanne, Mère Marie Thérèse, and many others who I may not remember the name of but who I thank for making me the person I am today: their faith and prayers were inspirational and certainly have born many fruit. I have been living in Costa Rica for years now after bringing up my family in Canada and have started getting involved with the Mexican Missionaries Servants of the World, MSP, who have recently taken over the administration of our parish. It is certainly thanks to the good work of all involved in my education during the nine years I was a student with the FCJ that I have now gone back to my old habits of prayer and of listening to and meditating the Word of God. I am presently taking Bible courses and am starting to get trained as lay preacher. It is nice to read through your visitors' book and read through the nice comments people have to say about fcj. May your Order continue to flourish.
Yours sincerely
Nadine Ann Carr (formerly Parr), Sta. Teresita de Nosara, Guanacaste, Costa Rica

Dear FCJs -- I have such joyful memories of doing my initial teaching practice at St Victoire in the early '70's. Many happy returns and prayers on your anniversary. (teaching at Mary Mother of God School in Toronto)
Tom Sherrard, Toronto

What a truly beautiful and informative website. thank you for the great work you do in spreading God's word and love.
May God continue to bless your community with dedicated women. Sincerely,
Sr. Blanche, CND

A wonderful celebration of Marie Madeleine Victoire's anniversary in Middlesbrough. Many thanks.
Denis Couhig, Middlesbrough, UK

Hola soy Abigail Carnicel soy de Tarija Bolivia hoy visistamos alas hermanas FCJ conocimos mas acerca de la vida de la fundadora y la vocacón de cada una de ellas, nos acogieron muy a gusto tuvimos un momento de Oración y compartimos la vocación que tenía cada una de nosotras, todas las que visitamos somos del colegio Maria Laura Justiniano Abigail, Lesdy,Andrea, Marcela, y nuestra querida profesora Silvi , yo doy catequesis en una capilla que se llama san Juan de Dios , me despido con un cordial saludo a todas las hermanas desirles que el trabajo que realizan es muy importante sigan adelante chauuuuuuuu
Abigail Carnicel, Tarija, Bolivia

Soy Andrea vivo en Bolivia en el departamento de Tarija hoy tuve el gusto de conocer a las hermanas FCJ son muy divertidas esto es una muy Buena experiencia en mi vida soy catequista de primera comunión estoy cursando el cuarto curso de secundaria estoy muy contenta por estar con ellas y conocer un poco de sus vidas y tambien de su congregación bueno hasta la proxima chauuuuuuuuuuuu
Andrea, Tarija, Bolivia

I am a 'one time' pupil of St Joseph's School in Benalla, Victoria, Australia. I am aproaching the venerable age of 80 years, but thank God am still active, alert and well. I was a class mate and close friend of Sr Shirley Kimball, and we still have close contact with each other. I have never lost my love for the FCJ's. They brought a dimension to my life from Gr Prep to Gr 8 (Merit Certificate in those days!) that I did not find in the last years of my education. I seemed to have a bit of talent in the music and drama departments, and to this day I am still involved in those areas. Thank you for this. During my life my husband and I have had a close association with the Missionaries of the Sacred Heart, who provided the later years of our children's educations. We also have so much to thank them for. I did not know until we had been to Issoudin and thereabouts, that there was such a close tie with the FCJs. A friend who was a member of the Genazzano community at the time gave me a book on the life of the Foundress, and I felt so at home with it when I read it, that I nearly missed my tram stop. Sometimes in life we don't appreciate our history until we are much older. I hope the charism of the FCJ order continues for a long, long time. Best wishes and prayers,
Stephanie Kent

Dear Sisters, Much love and prayers to each of you for this wonderful occasion (April 5 2008). Remembering you all as you join to celebrate  the journey to 'Faithful companionship' that was started so many years ago. Loving the new site...
Sharon ( CASEY)

Sister, I am sending this message in the hope that it can be placed in your message page on your wonderful web site. I wish to extend warm and loving greetings to all FCJ Sisters and especially those who have had such a powerful influence in my life. I want to take this opportunity to say hello to old friends and to let you all know that I am living in Monroe, Louisiana (Northeast Louisiana). I work at St. Francis Medical Center and my ministry is focused on the mission, vision and values of the Franciscan Missionaries of Our Lady Health System who are the sponsors of this health care ministry. The religious community of the Franciscan Missionaries of Our Lady was formally known as the Franciscan Sister of Calais, France.
       I feel my ministry here is shaped, fashioned and influenced by my own FCJ formation. I often think that Marie Madeleine would have loved the work and challenges present in this part of the world. The poor are numerous and the needs are great. So, I hope it is not too bold on my part to believe that my ministry here is experienced by me as a continuation of not only the mission of the Franciscans, but also of the FCJ's. It is in my blood since I have been with the FCJ's since elementary school and my mother was also taught and influenced by FCJ's.
       I have a sense of great pride for the FCJ community who were able to send two FCJ's to assist with the poorest of the poor when the area of Monroe was so overwhelmed with Katrina evacuees over two years ago. They made such a positive impact on the people they encountered and in the midst of great turmoil were able to bring comfort, help and joy. They were a blessing to these people of God – many people still speaking and smile about the two FCJ's who came to Monroe. Thank you for sending them this way.
Yvonne Boudreau, Louisiana, USA

While my sister and I attended Sacred Heart School, run by the FCJ Nuns in Kew Victoria. Australia, we both had pen pals from Salford. It was between 1940-1948; we use to send food parcels over to our pen pals. My sister was cleaning her cupboards and found this box, and in it was a photo of her pen pal and her sister, it was very clear, the girl's name was Maureen Atherton. It had Salford, Lancashire. We would love to get in touch with Maureen and talk about old times. We do not know what school Maureen went to, but we feel it was a school that had FCJ Nuns as teachers. as they found our school in Australia. My sister's name is Joan Marshall, Kew, Victoria, Australia. We would be grateful to hear from anybody, who can help. Thanks.
Betty Walters.

Hello, I'm an old St Victoire's girl from East London and ended up as a classically trained singer. I was very pleased to have come across the advert in the Universe last weekend – a paper I don't normally buy - regarding Marie Madeleine's 150th anniversary. What wonderful occasions in Paris and Liverpool. I would very much like to be part of the celebrations. Please do send me details of what is happening. St Victoire's closed down in 1973 but I am still in touch with Sr Christine and Sr Helen in the East End, as well as having met Mother Josephine Clayton who was my headteacher and who I believe is now in Salford. Also Theresa Sterling aka Watson who was Mother Mary at the time, and taught me Geography. I saw her last year with Sr Helen. They are both wonderful ladies and were at Gumley together all those years ago. I owe a lot to the FCJs and now live back in East London again, having been in Manchester, Glasgow, Colchester and other parts of London.
Una M Barry

Hi. It is some time since I last wrote to the visitors page. It seems that there are very few messages from past Scottish educated FCJ girls. We must have been a very rare breed indeed. Can I ask if Sister Agnes Convery is still alive and if so where is she situated. She was my primary school teacher in the 1940's. I know that the last time I enquired she was in the Salford Area - I think. Are there any more Paisley girls, we did have English boarders and I thought they might have been adding to the visitors page. God Bless.
Margaret McDowall (MacKay)

I was in La Chassotte in 1950-51,57-58 and remember quite clearly these excellent years. thank you, Sisters!. I am a grandmother now, and would like to have news from the Sisters and also from some of the "girls" of that time. thank you. Happy Easter!
Maria Luisa Cannavina Marioni

Hi everyone - I found this website by chance and was mesmerized.  It brought back so many memories to me - from decorating our bedrooms for December 8 to learning many many lines of Shakespeare!! Would love to hear from anyone who might remember me.... I attended St. Georges, Broadstairs and then Poles Convent, Ware, from 1957 - 1967. 
Christine Rozalla

Hello I have just visited your site and enjoyed reading. My name was Sylvia Porritt and some of my class mates (Newlands convent Middlesbrough) were Helen McLintock, Pat Duffy Ann McPartland. I am in my 70s now but would love to hear from any of the old class.I have lived in New Zealand and Australia since I was 26 but been lucky to visit UK many times.
Sylvia Pluck (née Porritt), New Zealand

I'd  like to add my bit to this website!  I attended Newlands in Middlesbrough, Yorkshire, from 1951-8, and have been pleased to find overlaps between my time there and that of other posters in this Visitors' Book.  I now have a very happy correspondence with Maureen Hodgson, who preceded me at the school, but we have found many areas of interest and have exchanged updates about all the decades since we were there! I'd be happy to hear from other students from that school, whether during my years there or not!   People who remember Marion Smith, brilliant English teacher, or Elise Berry, who taught Latin and Greek, Sister Gertrude, wonderful young nun,  Hilda Cassidy, French teacher who entered during my time at Newlands, and whom I missed very much once she became a Carmelite, Miss Carolan who ploughed a lone furrow in the art room at the top of the school.  and other memories you might have, I'd love to hear.  ( )
Liz Adams (then Elizabeth Ryder)

On a whim I searched to see if there was an Old Girls of Adelphi House website and was delighted to find your website and to read messages from a number of ex Adelphi House pupils.  Unfortunately none from my time.  After leaving school, I attended one Old Girls Reunion and soon after married  and came to live in New Zealand. I always intended to make contact with my friends from those formative years at Adelphi.  On my frequent trips home  I found the time was taken up visiting with my extensive family.  One year I determined to contact some of my old friends and was devastated to find the school had closed.  I would love to hear from anyone who was in my class.  I was there about 1950 - 1955.  The names that spring to mind are Olga Loram, Sheila Coughlin , Kathleen Reid, Margaret Richmond.  I vividly remember Mother Anna,  Mother Benedict and Mother Margaret Mary who had the unlikely job of teaching me to sew.  Miss Davis who gave me my love of history.  My name was Margaret Potter.  Today I am known as Margo Tamati.  To contact me by or . Kind regards,
Margo Tamati (née Potter)

When I lived near your part of the world I occasionally passed by the school knowing that my aunts Vera and Doris attended there sometime around and following the First World War. They had five brothers and their father Charles had his own building firm in Twickenham. Sadly Charles died in 1918 leaving his 16 year old son Arthur to go to sea and supply an income to the family. I never saw much of Vera, always a happy and positive lady, a genuine presence. There was a certain worldliness about her despite the convent upbringing. On the other hand, it was probably because of that experience because she always had compassion for people: an excuse for them and a helping hand whenever things went wrong. Vera married Charles and lived in Devon for a long while in poor circumstances but she was never diminished by that. One of her brothers, Percy, became a policeman and during World War II got promoted very rapidly ending up in charge of the Rome police and then doing the same for Milan. He had the bizarre distinction of retrieving and burying Benito Mussolini a couple of times. The Pope gave this protestant a Catholic knighthood for the social work he did around Anzio. Children were starving and dying, so he had begged, borrowed and stolen from the Americans. Policemen were good at doing that sort of thing. With the proceeds and the connivance of the Church he set up orphanages. Not bad for an ex-fairground boxer and a helping hand from Cardinal Gaspari. Percy's wife Dorothy was blown up during the blitz and became permanently hospitalised later in life, being totally disabled. Doris remained a spinster living with her bachelor brothers. For almost 16 years she took trains and buses from Petts Wood in Kent to Putney, visiting Dorothy in the RHHI each weekend. We nicknamed her "old faithful". She, like Vera, never rose very much in life career-wise, but for us they had very great value. Of course, Percy and Dorothy were my parents.
No need for a reply to this vignette. I am doing a bit of family genealogy at the moment and felt like thanking you for giving me two marvellous aunts. Wishing you all fruitful lives.
John Coxhead

I was a pupil at Gumley House from 1942 to approximately 1947 together with my Brother who is two years younger.  We both have vivid memories of being at the school and the kindness of the nuns.   Things remembered such as not being allowed to walk on the white squares on the black and white marble hall when we had to pass through on our way to lunch.   I particularly remember names such as Mother Agnes, Sister Francesca and how we had to take flowers to Reverend Mother on her Saints Day.  Miss Stead was our teacher in Kindergarten and sat at a very high desk.   We were terrified of her!  We then went up to Transition and the teacher there was a Miss Parsons - she was even more frightening to a small girl and boy.  I am still in contact with another ex pupil who married a friend of mine.  His name is Tony Crist and his daughter Henrietta Crist has been a more recent pupil.   My name in those days was Sonia Barnes and my Brother Richard. Sincerely,
Sonia McLaren

How lovely to come across your site. It brought back so many memories to me of my very early childhood. I attended the FCJ  Convent in Richmond Victoria known to us as Vaucluse Convent. It was my first school and where I learned the ABC & to write on a slate. I commenced there in 1939 & although I spent just a few years there, before war time evacuation to a country school, the memories are still strong.The names of my teachers have dimmed with the years but I remember their beautifully pleated bonnets & the painfully starched collars of our uniforms, the fun of the egg & spoon races & the uniform inspection days.  I wish you well in all of your endeavours & thank you for brushing away the cobwebs on a long gone childhood.
Maureen Lum (nee O'Rourke), Burwood, Victoria, Australia 

Hi from New Zealand. I have just discovered the FCJ web-site and have enjoyed reading the messages posted there. I was a pupil from 1955-1960 and really enjoyed my time there. I remember Elizabeth Wright and her descriptions of the teachers were as I remember them. Newlands was a great school with dedicated staff who really educated us. Each one of the women who taught me there have left a very clear impression on me, even today. I would be delighted to hear from any one who was at school with me and would love to know what happened to the teachers who taught me. Best wishes. ( )
Mary Cook ( nee Terry) New Zealand

I must be one of the real 'oldies'. A pupil at Adelphi  1940-45 and at Sedgley 1945-48. Lived in Salford, married and travelled, now living in New Zealand. As each year passes I become more grateful for the splendid education we had. Oh! For the wisdom of age when we were young, or at least when I was young. Still going strong. I often wonder if I am the only ex-pupil who made it so far away as this far flung corner?  Would be pleased to hear from any ex. pupils.   Best regards. ( )
Kath. Bengree  (nee Marchant) New Zealand

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Sam-tang kita nagkahiusa 
        pinaagi sa gugma walay
                makahasol kanato.     (Marie Madeleine)