Sister Germaine Bacon
“I trusted in your steadfast love; my heart shall rejoice…” Ps. 13: 6
January 24, 2012, Sister Germaine Bacon,
in religion M.-Philippe-d’Aquila, went home to God.
She was 89 years old and had been professed for 69 years.
Born in Sainte Thècle, Quebec, she was the 5th of 6 daughters of Philippe Bacon and Florida Veillet.
The only two boys died at an early age.
Germaine grew up in an atmosphere of faith, love and work. Her father owned three pieces of land and the girls worked in the fields, the garden, and milked the cows…. They also helped their mother with the household chores. And the neighbours? They were the uncles and aunts with large families. The relationships were affable and faith was part of the daily life. Germaine attended the local school up until Grade 6. One of her mother’s sisters was an SNJM missionary Sister in the United States and later in Africa. Whereas Germaine’s sisters got married, she remembered having asked Jesus at the time of her First Communion to become a religious. As a young girl, she had boyfriends, one of whom wanted to marry her.
“Like every young girl, I loved life. But I could not decide to settle down to family life without exploring religious life. – If I am not happy, I can’t make you happy, let me go and discover more about religious life. – I felt God’s call. I really struggled with the decision. I would pray to Mary to enlighten me and I was enlightened. No more inner turmoil: I felt peace and joy throughout my entire life.”
Germaine was 18 years old when she entered the SNJM’s. Sister Philippe-d’Aquila was named as a cook, something she excelled at for 52 years. She then devoted herself to our infirmary: the task of maintaining the premises, the kitchenette, overseeing the clothing of our sick Sisters, and accompanying the Sisters to hospitals… All of these services rendered to the community in various convents, at the Motherhouse, at the rest home in Saint-Sauveur were expressions of Sister Germaine’s capacity for adaptation and flexibility. For her, they were the occasion to express her concrete love for her Sisters in her daily life.
“In her various tasks, she knew how to find a balance in life by devoting herself to reading, swimming, walking and skiing.”
Enriched by the faithful love of her family, she remained a pleasant, joyful and grateful companion. Her secret? Sister Germaine declared:
“It is in accepting everything in faith and in surrendering to the will of God that I have found happiness by telling myself: There is nothing small in serving the Lord when there is love. I had my trials as everyone does, but with faith, prayer and trust, the Lord gave me the grace to accept them.”
At the age of 83, she was named to the ministry of prayer; the daily recitation of the Rosary brought her great inner joy. In this way she continued to open her heart to the needs of the world and prepare herself to meet her Great Love.