Wednesday, March 19, 2014

A familiar face

The original St. Joseph's shrine was on the western
edge of the Chalon Campus where the library is now.
THE COLLEGE IS NAMED for St. Mary, the Mother of God, but we have a second beloved patron in her husband and the Lord's foster father, St. Joseph. And while we usually refer to our founding Sisters in shorthand as "the CSJs," we shouldn't overlook the patronage of this great saint of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet.

Here are two small snapshots from the College Archives. The first shows the original shrine at Chalon, taken around the time it was christened St. Joseph's Park in the spring of 1937.

According to Sister Germaine's history 1925-1975, St. Joseph Park,
with its attractive wayside shrine, became the new devotional corner. This shrine. one of Mother Margaret Mary [Brady's] long-desired projects, was planted with a selection of rare trees and flowers, to make it valuable as a botanical garden also.
Funding for the shrine came from the Alumnae Association and other sources. The shelter was designed by Mother Margaret Mary, then president, with help from the Mount gardeners, and constructed of wood and locally quarried stone. It occupied an open space south of the College Building (now known as Brady Hall), where it stood for nearly a decade until it had to be moved to make way for the new library in 1946-1947.

Since then, St. Joseph's statue has occupied its honored spot in the Colonnade along the eastern edge of the Circle, a reminder that our patron still keeps his silent, loving vigil over the Mount community.

A student in bobby socks and saddle shoes pauses at St. Joseph's
shrine for a quick prayer between classes. Picture is dated 1961.

No comments:

Post a Comment