It’s an opportunity for local residents to have a piece of the Bethany Motherhouse. Several auctions are taking place at the Sisters of St. Martha Convent this
Bethany Motherhouse (www.themarthas.com)
week beginning this morning at 11 with larger kitchen equipment, walk in freezers, dishes, linens, cooking pots and pans, and cutlery.
On Friday night and Saturday morning, a variety of other items will be auctioned off, including tables, stands and desks; art work, church pews, sofas and chairs, bedding, fixtures, as well as household appliances. Some of the items date back to the 1900’s.
Sisters of St. Martha Congregation Leader Sister Brendalee Boisvert says it’s a period of mixed feelings as these items are sold off.
During a special viewing of the items in the Saturday auction on Friday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., some unadvertised times will be sold outright. There is a 5 dollar admission for Friday viewing only. The Bethany Motherhouse was built in 1921, with additions in 1937 and 1963.
It’s a tangible recognition of a new stage in the life of the Sisters of St. Martha in Antigonish. At a special ceremony Tuesday at the new home for the Sisters
“Journey” by Anna Syperek
of St. Martha, at Martha Place at Shannex Parkland, a large piece of art was unveiled. It was commissioned by the Town and County of Antigonish, St. Martha’s Regional Hospital Foundation and St. FX University. The five panel art work, called “Journey” by Anna Syperek, shows an unending road that passes by many familiar scenes, including farmland where many of the sisters grew up, to St. FX University, St. Martha’s Regional Hospital, the Bethany Motherhouse, fishing villages, to a big city and the mountains to depict the wide reach of the work of the Sisters. Congregation leader, Sister Brendalee Boisvert says the depiction of the unending road is fitting of how the Martha’s see themselves.
Boisvert says they felt the love of the local area by the many tributes at the ceremony of the Sister’s long history, to its work at St. FX University, support to
Depiction of St. FX University in “Journey”
local clergy, work in the Antigonish movement and the founding of several hospitals in the Diocese including St. Martha’s Regional
The Bethany Motherhouse in “Journey”
Hospital and the St. Martha’s School of Nursing.
Syperek says the painting shows the many stages in the lives of the Sisters.
Syperek says this is the largest project she has undertaken. It took three and half months to complete
Preparations are underway for the Sisters of St. Martha to move to their new home, from the Bethany Motherhouse to the Shannex complex next door. The Sisters held their
Bethany Motherhouse (www.themarthas.com)
final public mass in the chapel earlier this month; it’s estimated some 300 attended.
Congregation Leader Sister Brendalee Boisvert says there was one final gathering of the Sisters in the chapel before it was closed. The service was conducted by Bishop Brian Dunn.
Until they move, the Sisters will celebrate Mass at the Assembly Hall in the Motherhouse. When the Sisters do move to their new home in March, they will bring symbols of their old chapel with them; eight stain glass windows depicting eight female Saints
The Sisters of St. Martha are beginning to take steps in preparation of moving from the Motherhouse to the Shannex complex next door. In December, the Sisters closed Bethany Centre in the Motherhouse. For the past 45 years, Bethany Centre provided a variety of retreats and programs.
This month, the Sisters of St. Martha are launching the Martha Ministry of Spirituality. Congregation Leader Sister Brendalee Boisvert says it will incorporate many of the programs offered through Bethany Centre.
The Sisters of St. Martha have chosen 25 trees on its property at Bethany to commemorate persons and events in its history. The Sisters call this collection the first phase of its Bethany Arboretum. Sister Donna Brady says it is intended to raise awareness and understanding about the value of trees.
Brady says there will be a sign on the property identifying the Arboretum. At the sign will be a mailbox, containing a booklet with a map that identifies and explains each tree in the Arboretum. It is also creating maps that can be used on your smart phone. Phase one of the Arboretum will be officially opened Saturday at 2 p.m.
The Utility and Review Board has sided with Nova Scotia Power over a dispute on supplying electrical service to the new home of the Sisters of St. Martha. A new 25 bed nursing home is being built by Shannex Incorporated that will replace the Bethany Motherhouse. It’s being built next door to the existing structure.
Power to the Motherhouse, that straddles the Antigonish Town Boundry, is supplied by Antigonish Electric Utility. The utility anticipated it would also be the service provider to the new building, which is located in the county. However, Shannex has expressed a preference to deal with Nova Scotia Power.
The UARB concluded that the new facility is within the service territory of Nova Scotia Power and NSPI should provide service. A determining factor was the location of a 25 kilovolt loop owned by NSPI that is used to power all substations that service the Town. The board noted it is between the new facility and the Motherhouse, creating what appears to be a natural electrical boundary.
A weekend retreat later this month in Antigonish will explore Devine Mercy. The retreat, will be held from May 26th to 28th at the Claymore Inn. Presenters for the weekend are a brother and sister originally from Antigonish. Father Gary MacPherson is a priest in the parishes of St. Andrews, Heatherton, Pomquet and Giants Lake. Sister Jovita MacPherson is the Director of the Sisters of St. Martha Street Ministry in Halifax.
The weekend will include discussions on what is Mercy, the spirtual and corporal works of Mercy and how do get Mercy.
Father Gary MacPherson says by accepting God’s love, we become agents of his work.
More information on the retreat can be found on the 989XFM web site.