Sister Jeanne Bois
“See, I am making all things new.” Rev. 21:5
April 3, 2011, Sister Jeanne Bois,
in religion M.-Norbert-de-l’Eucharistie
went home to God.
She was 89 years old and had been professed for 66 years.
Born in Montreal, Quebec, she was the fourth of 8 children of Joseph Bois and Jeannette Mullen.
Jeanne grew up in the parish of St-Clément de Viauville. She was athletic and loved to go on long bike rides. At the age of 20 after having completed her studies at the convent in l’Épiphanie, Jeanne entered the SNJM’s in Montreal.
The new postulant began her teaching career with Grade Two children. Sister Norbert-de-l’Eucharistie was 28 years old when she was named Mistress of Discipline for the older students at Pensionnat Mont-Royal then at St-Lambert Convent and Collège Jésus-Marie respectively. She had a keen interest in photography and movies. At the high school level, she oversaw the sports program as well as the student council. “Goodness, wisdom, quality of listening and availability endeared her to her students”.
At the age of 49, following three years as Superior at Pensionnat St-Nom-de-Marie, Sister Jeanne accepted, to serve as Provincial Superior of the Maisonneuve Province. She was characterized by diplomacy, discernment, discretion, open-mindedness and honesty.
At the end of her mandate, Jeanne and the sisters she lived with in the Maisonneuve area of Montreal, worked together for a very special mission: that of helping the boat people. They volunteered at the “Centre Des Jardins” (helping with repairs, doing housework and welcoming people) in collaboration with the Carrefour Hochelaga-Maisonneuve. Jeanne also took care of the pastoral needs of seniors, and offered spiritual direction, including the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius, in the daily life format.
In her spare time, she loved to do woodcarving. We saved some of her works which included statues of our Blessed Marie-Rose Durocher. One of them is in a place of honour at Paroisse St-Arsène in Montréal.
Of her life, some companions testified: “Jeanne loved to laugh and conveyed a taste for life. A spiritual woman, she was humble, simple, warmly welcomed people and brought out the good in others. She forgave others and was not judgmental. Wise and with an ability to listen, she could be calming, comforting, consoling.”
After having served those in need on a daily basis for 22 years, Sister Jeanne arrived at our Motherhouse and carried out light duties. As her hearing and sight progressively diminished, she withstood these handicaps without complaining. Jeanne lived the last 6 years of her life in our infirmary where in turn, she received with gratitude what she had so generously shared with others. She was ready to meet the One whom she had served, in others, with compassion and generosity.