Sister Magella Cadorette
“Father, I desire that those you have given me may be with me where I am.” (Jn 17:24)
On April 17, 2023, Sister Magella Cadorette,
in religion Léonard-Marie,
went home to God.
She was 97 years old, with 73 years of religious profession.
Born in Chartierville, Québec, she and her twin were the 13th and 14th
of the 14 children born to Eugène Cadorette and Edwidge Landry.
Magella lost her twin several months after their birth. Of the 14 children in the family, there were three sets of twins but four of these babies died at birth or soon after. Magella, therefore, grew up as the tenth and last of the living children. She studied in Chartierville, then at Teacher’s College in East Sherbrooke. Then she returned to Chartierville to teach. Three of her four older sisters were already Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary (SNJM). Magella followed them, entering the SNJM novitiate at the age of twenty.
After her novitiate, Sister Léonard-Marie taught at St-Nom-de-Marie in Montreal for ten years. Later on, she taught in the Eastern Townships: Cookshire, Scotstown, La Patrie, Maskinongé, and Garthby. While teaching, Magella continued her studies, completing Bachelor’s degrees in education and in theology. She taught French in high school in East Angus for 17 years. She was very dedicated to her work and carefully prepared her classes which she taught with discipline mixed with warmth. She was especially attentive to the less gifted students and ministered as a teacher for a total of 35 years.
After a few years helping with extra curricular activities at Marie-Rose High School in Montreal, Magella helped in the pharmacy at the Motherhouse for a year before becoming pastoral animator in the diocese of Montreal. It was there that she said she found her calling and spent the best 30 years of her life. As a member of the local community of Marie-Rose-Durocher Residence, Magella assumed her share of community services, all the while preparing children of the elementary school and various parishes for the sacraments. Then entering the new millennium, she was happy to be involved in the Christian Initiation for adolescents and adults (RCIA) in the diocese. Magella also loved her work as sacristan at her residence, where she assumed her responsibilities for the chapel and liturgy in a spirit of prayerfulness, attention to detail, and a taste for beauty.
As her hearing diminished, communication became increasingly difficult. Sister Magella was named to Maison Jésus-Marie where she joined her two older sisters, Rose-Eva et Thérèse. Always hard on her body and very discreet about her personal life, Magella went to the infirmary only when she needed complete care. Three weeks later, our God, whom she had served faithfully and wholeheartedly, came to bring her into the fullness of joy. From there we can imagine her continuing her ministry of the Word, at Mother Marie-Rose’s side.