Catholic Diocese of Spokane, Washington

From the

Official News Magazine of the Diocese of Spokane

Deacon Eric Meisfjord, Editor
P.O. Box 48, Spokane WA 99210
(509) 358-7340; FAX: (509) 358-7302

Regional Report

the Inland Register

(From the October 20, 2011 edition of the Inland Register)

Diocese of Helena

ST. IGNATIUS – New headstones mark the graves of 14 women Religious who ministered in St. Ignatius as Sisters of Providence, the order that arrived there in 1864 to educate women and girls, and expanded the ministry into care of the sick. From St. Ignatius, service by the Sisters of Providence spread throughout western Montana and northern Idaho.

The headstones replacing deteriorated grave markers were dedicated last summer in a ceremony that brought Sister Kathryn Rutan, the Sisters of Providence general superior, from Montreal. Participants also included representatives of the Diocese of Helena and Missoula’s St. Patrick Hospital, which opened in 1873 under Sisters of Providence sponsorship and retains that sponsorship today.

“We do stand on holy ground here at this historic cemetery,” said Sister Karin Dufault, provincial superior for the Sisters’ Mother Joseph Province and who traveled from Renton, Wash., for the occasion. “Today we remember and recall the legacy left to us by the Jesuits and Sisters of Providence who pioneered the St. Ignatius Mission in collaboration with the Flatheads, Pend d’Oreilles and Kootenai native people who welcomed them.”

Sister Karin spoke of the rigors endured by the earliest Sisters at St. Ignatius, who went there to minister with Jesuits at the request of missionary Father Pierre Jean De Smet. Four Sisters traveled by horse from what is now Walla Walla, Wash., arriving in St. Ignatius on Oct. 17, 1864.

Sisters Mary of the Infant Jesus and Mary Edward, both in their 30s, and 18- year-old Sister Remi had traveled from Montreal, meeting up with 21-year-old Sister Paul Miki when they got to Walla Walla, Sister Dufault said. The trip on horseback from Walla Walla to St. Ignatius took five weeks. Getting from Montreal to St. Ignatius spanned four months and included travel by rail, ship, mule and covered wagon, Suzanne H. Schrems writes in her book Uncommon Women, Unmarked Trails.

Service by the Sisters of Providence in St. Ignatius formally concluded in 1977, when they transferred sponsorship of Holy Family Hospital to the community.

— The Montana Catholic (Diocese of Helena)

Archdiocese of Portland

TROUTDALE – This summer, Camp Howard set an attendance record, with more than 1,500 campers spread out over the six sessions. That success was 60 years in the making.

Camp Howard – Oregon’s Catholic camp, run by the Catholic Youth Organization – will celebrate the anniversary in 2012.

Father Jerome Schmidt, director of Catholic Charities, was responsible for the early development of the camp and served as director in 1953 and 1954. Father Carl Gimpl in 1955 was appointed director of “Camp Howard of Oregon” – named to honor Archbishop Edward Howard. Father Gimpl served in that capacity until 1980, when CYO and Camp Howard of Oregon became one organization under Father Gimpl as executive director and with the new name “CYO/Camp Howard.”

The Dwyer Family, a well-known Catholic family in the area, supplied plywood for the camp. The Dwyer plywood stamp is still visible today in a few places. What was once the camp’s swimming pool is now referred to as “the swimming hole” and used for canoeing. A pool was built at the camp in the ’80s to replace swimming at the pond.

A camper from the ’70s and ’80s would hardly recognize Camp Howard. With just more than 50 buildings at the camp, a lot of updating and renovation has been done over the past 15 years to appeal to campers and make their stay at camp enjoyable. All buildings have been painted, preserved, cleaned, new steps added where necessary, and boards replaced to make the buildings appealing and enjoyable.

While early campers would still recognize the camp, they would be amazed at the development that’s taken place since 1952. One thing about Camp Howard that has not changed in 60 years is that kids have a great time. Eight in 10 campers come from Catholic schools or parishes.

— Catholic Sentinel (Archdiocese of Portland)

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