Sister Juliette Généreux
When, in August 1964, I climbed the hill that leads to the Beauport convent of the Dominican Missionary Adorers, I did not know this community’s spirituality. Yes! It was one of the Lord’s pranks! He led me to Beauport, and later I discovered the treasure little by little. What a teaching method!
I was born in 1945 to a Christian couple in the small Franco-Albertan village of St Paul. The eldest of a family of seven children (I have three brothers and three sisters), I began while very young to learn to share and to give of myself, following our parents’ example. I quickly got involved in youth movements. There I persevered in this apprenticeship, and it was by means of this that I saw in myself the desire grow to be a missionary one day. This desire was frequently exercised through the visits of speakers from various missionary religious orders to our school, when they spoke to us about far-away mission countries where the challenges were many, including dangerous travels and exotic creepy crawlies. I wanted to be a missionary one day, in order to take up those challenges, but also to make Jesus known, He whom I had learned to love in the warmth of the family home, in school and in the youth movements.
The Dominican formation was beginning.
Years passed. My first missionary experience as a DMA took place among the native peoples of Alberta, the province where I was born. In this, I recognise God’s love and sense of humour. I was by then professed in temporary vows. At that time, my community allowed me to undertake a professional formation; for two years, I was away from my religious community as I lived in the nurses’ residence in Edmonton, Alberta. My motivation at the time was to reach full competence in nursing skills in order to be a missionary. I have worked mostly among the natives, alternating pastoral work and nursing care during 28 years.
In 1997, I was called to the mother house in Beauport, in order to serve my community in administrative tasks. For me it meant setting off on a new path, in order to deepen the hidden meaning of mission. The place where I am or the task entrusted to me do not matter, for I believe that, united with Christ’s offering in the Eucharist, I am at every moment on this mission and I can, with Him, carry the sufferings and the hopes of the whole world which is thirsting for salvation. This is what makes me live and gives me the most profound joy today.
I thank the Lord for the gift that he gave us in Mother Julienne of the Rosary, our foundress. Through her teaching but above all by the example of her life, she prepared us to live for the mystery of the action of the Eucharist in the world, and this is mission.
The adventure goes on…
Sr. Juliette Généreux, o.p., 2011