When the Fall 2021 issue of Ramsey County History Magazine comes out just before Thanksgiving, Our Lady of Peace Hospice will be on the cover. Editor Meredith Cummings gave us a bit of a preview of the article. She says that after looking through pictures and letters from families that have been cared for and supported through the years, she realized that
OLP is an important place, and the story had to be told.
On December 7th, Our Lady of Peace will celebrate 80-years of end-of-life care on the corner of Cleveland and St. Anthony Avenues in St. Paul. Who Meredith calls “The Pioneer Dominican Sisters of Hawthorne” arrived just days before, on November 26th, and quietly opened their doors on what would become known as Pearl Harbor Day, 1941. “They were an unknown organization that didn’t toot their horn but seemed to get the word out to those who needed their help.”
After searching local newspapers during that time period, including the Pioneer Press, Meredith found that there was no coverage of the opening. At the same time, she discovered that when Rose Hawthorne began this work on the streets of New York in the late 1800’s, it was covered in the society pages. Rose was the daughter of American author Nathaniel Hawthorne who later became Mother Alphonsa, the founder of the Dominican Sisters of Hawthorne. There were also negative reports that claimed that Rose was attracting vagrants, but it didn’t stop her. She marched on with her mission to serve the cancerous poor at no cost, a mission that continues to this day with the addition of serving patients with any terminal illness.
Meredith hopes you will read the article about “this impressive operation that has made a difference in the community and is continuing to do so.” OLP is honored to be featured, and as we celebrate 80-years on December 7th, we will give thanks for our past, the present, and the future of compassionate care at Our Lady of Peace. Watch for the article in the Ramsey County History Magazine in November. The award-winning quarterly magazine, published by the Ramsey County Historical Society, is filled with wonderful stories, photos, and maps reflecting the lives, history, and culture of our capital county.