Sister Marthe Proulx
“Those who love me will keep my word, and my Father will love them, and we will come to them and make our home with them.“ Jn. 14, 23
September 14, 2011, Sister Marthe Proulx,
in religion M.-Philippe-de-l’Eucharistie,
went home to God.
She was 94 years old and had been professed for 65 years.
Marthe was a year and a half when her mother died. Her father remarried 5 years later and the family grew to include seven children. From the time she began school, she dreamed of religious life. After completing courses at the “École Normale” in Valleyfield, she tried to enter a contemplative community: first the Poor Clares in Valleyfield, then the Servants of Jesus-Marie in Hull and finally the Visitandines in Ottawa. Each time, she was refused because of her weak health. Faced with these refusals, she would teach for three years, during which time she requested to enter a the SNJM’s, a teaching congregation which she knew well. After two refusals for the same reason, her perseverance finally paid off. She was 27 years old.
Sister Philippe-de-l’Eucharistie continued her teaching career in the Eastern Townships. For 19 years, she taught elementary school children and later secondary level students. She was also the Directress at École St-Joseph in Sherbrooke for the following 12 years. Eager to round out the formation of her students, she helped them with Catholic Action activities and the Sodality of Mary. Although limited by a weak heart, she happily and generously found the energy needed to carry out her many commitments throughout the years.
The project for the Résidence Saint-François-d’Assise, where contemplative prayer was a priority, would fulfill Sister Marthe’s aspirations when she retired. At 65 years of age, she could, at last, devote a lot of time to prayer and dedicate herself to parish liturgies. During the last 8 years she was in our infirmary. Sister Marthe remained a prayerful person who held within her heart that “all is grace”, trials as well as joys, health as well as sickness, as she pressed forward to what was Essential.