On February 19 was born

Emilie Gamelin


Émilie Tavernier Gamelin, S.P., (19 February 1800 – 23 September 1851) was a French Canadian social worker and Roman Catholic Religious Sister.
She is best known as the founder of the Sisters of Providence of Montreal.
In 2001 she was beatified by Pope John Paul II.

She was born Marie-Émilie-Eugène Tavernier (also known as Amélie) on 19 February 1800 in Montreal, the youngest of the 15 children of Antoine Tavernier and Marie-Josephe Maurice. Nine of her siblings died before reaching adulthood. Gamelin’s mother died in 1804 when Gamelin was aged 4 and her father died in 1814 when Gamelin was aged 14. Consequently, Gamelin was raised by her aunt Marie-Anne Tavernier and her husband Joseph Perrault, to whose care Gamelin’s mother had entrusted Émilie prior to her death. Gamelin shared the Perrault household with her aunt and uncle and their four children.

Despite her interest in consecrated life, on 4 June 1823 Marie-Émilie married Jean-Baptiste Gamelin, a 50-year-old bachelor of Montreal who made a living dealing in apples. The marriage lasted four years ending with Jean-Baptiste’s death on 1 October 1827. Gamelin had three children by the marriage, but two had died shortly after birth and the third died within a year of Jean-Baptiste.

After the death of her husband, to assuage her grief Gamelin took an interest in charitable works. In 1827 she was guided by her spiritual director, Jean-Baptiste Bréguier dit Saint-Pierre, to pray to Our Lady of Seven Dolors and to join two groups organized by the Sulpician Fathers. These groups were the Confraternity of the Public Good, which arranged work for the unemployed, and the Ladies of Charity, a group aimed at relieving poverty and destitution through home visits and the distribution of alms. In 1828 she also joined the Confraternity of the Holy Family, a group dedicated to the spiritual growth of its members and the spreading of the Roman Catholic faith.

More about Emilie Gamelin:
Émilie Gamelin, Canadian nun and social worker, founded the Sisters of Providence


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