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Celebrating in Medicine Hat

Tributes, stories, songs and laughter were all part of a festivity held at the Holy Family Church hall in Medicine Hat on Oct. 25th, 2019 to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the Ursulines of Prelate. (Even Elvis turned up for the event!)

Vivian Bosch, Mildred Martin and Ron Hoffart were among the organizers of a joyful celebration which drew some 75 parishioners including St. Angela’s Academy Alumnae, Associates, former students, relatives and friends of the Ursulines. Having come from Saskatoon, Sister Anne Lewans, General Superior, and Sister Teresita Kambeitz, General Assistant, were honored to represent the Ursulines on this occasion.

Following a visual presentation of the 100-year history of the Ursulines of Prelate, a program of reminiscing paid many delightful and informative tributes to the lives and work of the Ursuline Sisters. Angela Ella spoke of the kindness of the Sisters who took in her grandmother, Filomena Fenrich, as the first boarder at the convent in 1920 and Rachel (Wickenheiser) Hammel recalled the hospitality of the Sisters in providing a home for members of her family following the death of their mother. Betty Ann Lefebvre recalled the turning point at the Academy when lay teachers were hired on staff.

Other stories featured with great appreciation Sisters Louise and Alfreda who taught and ministered in Medicine Hat for 39 years from 1971 until 2010. Vivian Bosch related her personal connections with the convent chapel pews which the Sisters donated to her home parish in Swift Current when the Academy closed in 2007. Nineteen SAA Alumnae sang humorous memories of homesickness in “I wanna go home.” Ron Hoffart paid a well-deserved tribute to Edwin Meuchel who served as St. Angela’s Convent/Academy maintenance man for 41 years.

Displays featured photos of the 81 departed Sisters and the 35 Sisters presently in the congregation, as well as works of art, yearbooks, and Academy uniforms.

Speaking on behalf of the Ursulines, Sister Anne expressed sincere gratitude to the many people who supported and worked with the Sisters over the years and all those who arranged and attended this gracious celebration, including Father Igbal, pastor of Holy Family Church (and event photographer). She and Sister Teresita cut the large cake which was decorated with the 100th Anniversary logo: “Rejoice! One hundred years of blessings.” It was then shared with the crowd along with plenty of good wine!

- Sister Teresita Kambeitz, OSU

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