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Celebration in Trochu

4- in Canada - Date of publication 11-09-2009
Trochu… do you know this village (in the Canadian sense of the word), this town for those of us arriving for the Centenary?
Our hearts were beating as we got out of the coach on Friday 14th August 2009 and in spite of the rain which began to fall, our eyes were wide open.

First of all, we paid homage to the Sisters at the monument in the graveyard where our youngest member, Marie- Laurence Recton, proudly deposed a spray of flowers. Then, in silence after the prayer, we murmured the names of all those who rest, no, who sing God’s praises together with all the angels and saints in paradise! 


Then we came together in the Baptist Fellowship Hall which was big enough for our celebrations. The sense of ecumenism that brings together the Christian communities, here, made it possible for us to use this comfortable room: just as well, for outside it is pouring rain or God’s blessings on our festivities.


“Do you speak English?”, “Do you speak French?” as we looked at each other. But first of all we applauded the music and the orchestra installed on the stage: “Alouette… Gentille alouette...”, everyone knows how to mime this song. 


A hot meal was served and we all formed a queue. Self-service is so practical! 


Then, as the accordion continued to play the younger at heart began to dance. We discovered the skills of some and the good will of others when Elisabeth began to lead us in the line dancing.


The “ice was broken” as our Canadian friends would say. 


There followed the welcome by the hosts who had generously offered to open their homes and the distribution of gifts: shorts or jeans? No, a clever little bag. 


We began to discover the ingenuity shown by the preparation team. A year spent reflecting, studying, inventing...

Saturday 15th August

We visited the coulée and everyone wanted to walk on the soil trodden by our 8 missionary Sisters in 1909. It was pouring down… yet this did not dampen our joy. 


Instead of a celebration in the open air, we all crowded together in a wooden house, a reproduction of the house lived in by the first Sisters. This was a marvellous celebration followed by a warm drink. 


We then visited the buildings reconstructed to represent the first school, the first sick room, re-enforced by photos, pictures and objects. 


In the afternoon we visited the town where the shopkeepers had decorated the shop fronts with pictures representing the arrival of the first Sisters. 


We met many people all of them friends of the Sisters who had lived in Trochu! Speeches full of gratitude and praise from the officials while souvenir photos were shown on a big screen. Those who could not speak English were able to admire what they saw with their eyes. 


A self service dinner with enough for everyone to eat! What generous benefactors! A souvenir T shirt was on sale where the Sisters could be seen and recognised! 


Sunday 16th August 


Thanks be to God for the parish and the Bishop of Edmonton. An excellent choir! The precious symbol of a family trio where grandfather, father and son Joel all attended the school dedicated to Our Lady of Pontmain. 


Then we came together once again in the big hall for a self service meal and toasts in honour of the pioneer Sisters. 


A photo of Armand Trochu who gave his name to the town was on display. Together with others he warmly welcomed the pioneer Sisters in 1909.



Consult the archives
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A celebration of religious life was held at the parish of Saint Pierre/Saint Vénérand in Laval the 30th and 31st January 2010.
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