Our Patron Saint
St. Mother Theodore Guerin
Feast Day on October 3
Here is information about our parish patron saint from the Sisters of Providence, spsmw.org:
St. Mother Theodore was a woman of courage, determination and compassion. From a young age she faced many challenges. Her trust in Providence – the protective care of God – helped her accomplish many things.
Born Anne–Therese Guerin in the village of Etables–sur–Mer in Brittany, France, she spent many years taking care of her mother and sister after the tragic deaths of both her brothers and her father. At the age of 25 her mother allowed her to follow her dream and devote her life entirely to God.
St. Mother Theodore entered religious life with the Sisters of Providence of Ruille–sur–Loir, France. It was around this time that she began having health issues that would plague her the rest of her life. This did not deter her.
As a new sister St. Mother Theodore was sent to various parishes in France where she taught, helped the poor, and cared for the sick. When the bishop of Vincennes, Indiana requested sisters to come to the New World to help with the influx of Catholic immigrants, St. Mother Theodore was thought to be the only woman who could undertake such a demanding mission.
The journey was long and difficult. After traveling for nearly three months St. Mother Theodore and her five companions arrived, only to discover they were in the remote wilderness of Indiana known as Saint Mary–of–the–Woods. There was not a village or a house in sight. Life was not going to get any easier.
Despite the obstacles, St. Mother Theodore was able to open an academy for girls in less than a year. Once this was done she continued forward and established schools throughout Indiana and eastern Illinois. She also opened two orphanages in Vincennes and a free pharmacy at St. Mary–of–the–Woods and Vincennes.
St. Mother Theodore died May 14, 1856. On October 15, 2006 at St. Peter’s Square in Rome Mother Theodore was canonized and received the title, “Saint” from the Catholic Church. She is designated in the Vatican’s official record as St. Theodora.