Saturday, 11 August 2018


I am happy to say that this post (click here) had a grand response on our school facebook page.  As promised, I will now reveal the little inaccuracies in the otherwise beautiful sketch by the late Bill Guihan.

The sketch of St Patrick’s Church itself is actually faultless.  It was completely accurate when it was drawn in the 1980s.  The problems arose when the artist inserted the horse and buggy and the old fashioned people walking down the church yard.  Those touches indicated a much earlier time.  Someone pointed out that the horse and buggy were driving on the wrong side of the street.  That was a good observation but, as someone else said, we drove on the left until 1947 so that wasn’t the problem.  Other suggestions were that St Patrick’s statue wasn’t enclosed. St Patrick’s statue wasn’t there at that time so that isn’t it either.  Anyway, I have enjoyed all your remarks on this and I am really grateful to you for making the effort and having a go.  I hope you have enjoyed it too.  But what makes the church and the horse and buggy, etc, so incompatible?  Let’s have a look.

Bill Guihan's beautiful drawing of St Patrick's Church

Well first of all, that side door pictured at the very left of the church was not there until the 1960s.  (Not too many horses trotting up Patrick St then.) That was installed during the restorations carried out by Msgr Murphy to make it easier for the elderly because it had fewer steps than the main door.  A couple of you picked up on the side door and someone else came very close to it.  Those steps at the main door are an epic climb for anyone!  

The railings at the right side of the picture are a later addition so couldn’t have been seen by the folks who travelled by horse drawn carriages.

I think that the statue referred to by one of you is the one on the bank at the side of the church.  If it is, that is the statue of Our Lady and that too is a much later addition; perhaps 1980s.  St Patrick is in his glass box at the side of the church now but he wasn’t there when Bill Guihan gave us this excellent sketch of our beloved St Patrick’s Church.

Bill Guihan was a very talented artist and I really love this picture of St Patrick’s.  However, a little part of me wishes that he had drawn what he saw and left it at that.

Again, thanks everyone for taking part in this little adventure. You St Patrick’s people are absolutely wonderful! 

Thursday, 9 August 2018


How many of you have seen this picture before?  I think it is a great picture and I love it. It is from a book which was given to me more than twenty years ago by one of my nieces.  Perhaps you have see this book or even own a copy of it. The book, by Bill Guihan, (1917-1992) is called “Sketches of the Old City”.  It is a fascinating documentation of some of the most historic architecture around St John’s.  An interesting and entertaining book, it will make you look with fresh eyes at our lovely old city of St John’s.
St Patrick's Church, by Bill Guihan

As I have said, I love this picture but I see a little inaccuracy in it.  I won’t tell you what it is but if you spot it, please leave me a comment and share what you think is amiss.  In a couple of days I will let you know what it is. 

Sunday, 5 August 2018


I am indebted to Dora Reid for this post.

In the 1980s, Dora was one of the Safety Patrol Monitors who regularly guided pupils over the Cross Walk on their way to and from school. Dora and fellow Monitor, Nicole Molloy, were selected to represent St Patrick's at a Cross Walk Safety Conference in Ottawa. At that time, Dora was in Grade 6 and her teacher was Mrs Warren. We are delighted to share Dora's newspaper clipping here.  
Dora Reid and Nicole Molloy
I have cropped the picture in the hope you will be better able to read the newspaper report.  

What the newspaper said!
I thought you would like to get a closer look at Dora and Nicole too.

The chosen delegates
No doubt, Some of you will know Dora and Nicole and will remember this occasion.  I expect you will probably remember being secretly envious too.

Thanks very much, Dora.  If you have anything else you would like to share, we would be more than pleased to hear about it.

Monday, 30 July 2018


Looking at this group of lovely ladies, who would ever think that 50 years have slipped by? Well, we have it on good authority that they really have!  In true St Patrick's Convent fashion, the girls still keep in touch and cherish the friendships that they made in those carefree school days.  

Christine Mary Butler, who sent us the photo, told us that they had their 50th Anniversary gathering of their Grade 3 Class (1967-68) on Sunday, 10 June 2018.  They had an "awesome time"  and are eagerly anticipating their next meeting in 2019.

Well done ladies and thank you Christine.  It is always so good to hear from you and to keep up to date with your group's activities.

Saturday, 7 July 2018


Yesterday, St Patrick's Church was packed as family, friends and former parishioners gathered to bid a fond farewell to a respected and much loved priest, Monsignor James Doody.  Father Doody was Pastor of St Patrick's Parish for 24 years and he endeared himself to all.  He was a man of kindness, compassion and generosity.  We are all very sad that he has left us but we will revere his memory.  Truly he was an exemplary priest who didn't just preach the Gospel.  He lived it!  

Thank you Father Doody.  Rest now in peace with the Lord for whom you lived your life.

Monsignor James J Doody

Below is Msgr Doody's obituary as it appeared on Caul's site.

"Monsignor James Doody
December 01, 1925 - July 03, 2018

Monsignor James Doody, P.P., P.H.

“He threw many of us a life line when we needed it”
December 1, 1925 – July 3, 2018
As a child, Monsignor Jim Doody the son of Casimer Doody and Sarah Byrne of Mosquito, Colinet Island, S.M.B, helped his father in the fishery, and as a teenager he had his own fishing boat.  For the last sixty-five years, he has been what the scriptures describes as a “fisher of people.”  Monsignor Jim Doody, age 92 years, set sail from this place on July 3, 2018, and thus he has secured his berth in the final port of call.
James Joseph Doody was born on December 1, 1925.  He was ordained to the priesthood for the Archdiocese of St. John’s on June 21, 1953.  As a ‘fisher of people’ he held a number of Pastoral and Administrative Appointments: St. Joseph’s Parish, St. John’s; Holy Apostles Parish, Renews; St. Kyran’s, Bar Haven, Oderin, and Merasheen Parishes;  Oderin Parish; Monsefu, Peru Parish;  Sacred Heart Parish, St. Mary’s; Sacred Heart Parish, Placentia; Ministry to Priest’s Program, St. Joseph’s Parish, St. John’s; and his final and longest serving ministry was St. Patrick’s Parish, St. John’s and St. John Bosco Parish, Shea Height’s (1986-2010).
In December 1994, Pope John Paul II designated him as a Prelate of Honor (PH) with the lifetime title of Monsignor. It is recognition by the Vatican and Pope of special service rendered to the Church. He retired from active ministry in June 2010, taking up residence at St. Patrick’s Mercy Home in 2012.
He leaves to mourn: Archbishop Martin Currie, Brother Priests, Religious Sisters and Christian Brothers, his sister Etta Conway residing in Corner Brook, nieces and nephews, his special friend and caregiver Brenda King and family, the Staff, Sisters and Volunteers at St. Patrick’s Mercy Home and all who cared so well for him.
Visitation at St. Patrick’s Mercy Home Chapel on Wednesday, July 4th, 3-5 pm. 
Caul's Funeral Home, LeMarchant Road, Wednesday, July 4th, 7-9 pm and Thursday, July 5th, 10 am - 5 pm.
St. Patrick’s Church, Patrick Street, Thursday, July 5th, 6 pm - 9 pm.; with Vigil Service at 7:30 pm. 
Mass of Christian Burial Friday, July 6th at 11 am St. Patrick’s Church.
Internment to follow in the priests’ plot at Belvedere Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in his memory to the building fund in your home parish.
His boat of life was filled to the brim with family and friends. He took many of us in when our boats capsized, and he threw many of us a life line when we needed it. In life, he knew at times what it was like to be adrift but always found his way back to the harbour where he laid anchor with us and we are all so very grateful."                               

Monday, 4 June 2018


These pictures were posted quite awhile ago by Maureen Sullivan and Mike Power on our facebook page. Because they are such interesting photos, I think they deserve a wider audience.  Maybe, and it is a very big maybe, someone out there can give us a name or two.

Maureen tells us that this picture is of the Holy Cross First Communion Class of 1928.  How awesome is that!
Holy Cross First Communion Class, 1928
Mike's picture is of a group of unnamed St Patrick's Girls.  Mike speculates that it was taken sometime in the 1940s and I think he might be right.  I think the month is either May or June because one of the girls has a ribbon and medal pinned to her uniform.
A group of St Patrick's Girls.  Who are they?
Where was the photo taken?
I would like to thank both Maureen and Mike for sharing these two amazing photos with us.  They are really special. If you come across any other photos that you would like to share, either St Patrick's or Holy Cross, we would be more than happy to post them.  You can send them to us at   

Saturday, 2 June 2018


I think we have a real treasure of a photo here today and it is all thanks to Cathy Simms Healy and Betty Simms.  Cathy is the owner of the prized photo and she passed it on to Betty who then passed it on to us.  Cathy has also given us names, year and event!

The year was 1956 and the event was the prestigious Kiwanis Music Festival.  The girls are all decked out in their special attire, which was probably commissioned for the occasion. This St Patrick’s Convent School choir was under the direction of Sr M Carmelita Meaney PBVM.

The girls are,
Back, L-R:  Norah Brazil, Joan Galway, Patricia Power, Frances Jackman, Patricia Farrel, Marge McGrath, Eleanor O’Reilly, Catherine Whalen, Marina Sorenson, Betty Wilson, Eileen O’Brien, Joanne Ashley
Row 3:  Alice Tobin, Barb Morrissey, ?, Patricia Walsh, Barbara Stone, ?, Patricia Browne, Irene Grant, Joan Alyward, Sheila Squires, Margie Sorenson, Bernice Corbett
Row 2:  Brenda Whalen, Jessie Murphy, Shirley Mahoney, Carol Bennett, Bernice Everard, Patricia Reardon, Frances Hennessey, Madonna O’Neill, Judy Whiffen, Roseann Bulger, Lucy O’Keefe, Rosalie Follett, Ada Mercer
Row 1:  Josephine Mahoney, Catherine Simms, Patricia Moore, Judy Murphy, Catherine Martin, Peggy O’Toole, Barbara Walsh, Noreen Carter, Patricia O’Leary

A very big Thank You to Cathy for sharing this wonderful memory with us.  Thanks also to my dear friend Betty for passing it on to us.  Thank you both for your continued support for this blog.  

Tuesday, 29 May 2018


This post takes us all the way to St George, Utah, where we find some wonderful work being done.  There is a very strong link to Newfoundland and to St Patrick’s and I am grateful to Teri Healey Evans for sharing this with us. Teri and her sisters are all graduates of St Patrick’s Convent Schools and Teri brings us news of one of the sisters, Betty.  

Many of us shared our school days with Betty and remember her with affection.  Betty Healey Brown now lives in North Carolina.  This is a story of Betty and her two amazing, community spirited sons, Norm and Glenn Thibault.  The boys were born in Newfoundland, Baptised at St Patrick’s and, after moving to the States, spent most of their summers with their Healey family in Newfoundland.  Teri says that if you ask Norm and Glenn where they are from they will proudly tell you “Newfoundland”

Both boys put themselves through college and Glenn became a very successful businessman and Norm a dedicated Family and Adolescent Therapist.  Norm had a great desire to help adolescents who have been adopted and who have been coping with issues of rejection, drugs, alcohol abuse and myriad other problems.   With the help of his brother Glenn’s financial backing, Norm’s dream became a reality.

September 2017 saw the grand opening of their treatment centre for such young people.  The facility is named ‘Three Points Center,’  and is located at St George, Utah.  Glenn, who lives in Colorado, was there for the opening. The boys’ very proud mother, Betty, joined them and helped cut the ribbon. At present the facility is operating at full capacity with children from across the USA and elsewhere.  Reports of the Center’s good work and excellent results are spreading far and wide. Recently, Three Points Center was featured in a documentary on a French T V Station which had flown a crew over to film at the Ranch. 

I am certain that, not only Betty, but the entire Healey family is bursting with pride at the work these two dedicated young men are doing and the good they are bringing about.  I don’t think it would be too presumptuous if we, as fellow Newfoundlanders, schoolmates, and friends of the Healey family feel a little of that pride too.
Betty Healey Brown with her two sons, Glenn and Norm, at the opening of 'Three Point Center'
in St George, Utah

Teri has sent us a picture of the ribbon cutting which we are delighted to post on our School Blog.  Thanks Teri for this very interesting and inspiring story.  We send greetings to Betty and wish Norm and ‘Three Points Centre every success.  

**** If you click on either of the 'Three Points' names above, you will be taken to its website where you can learn all about the facility and its work.

Sunday, 27 May 2018


Back in March I received this picture from Patricia Moores Walsh.   Isn’t it a beauty?  Patricia informed us it is Miss Morgan’s other Kindergarten Class, 1967.  She has also given us some names but we are counting on you to help us with the ones that Patricia missed.   

****I have a great reason for updating this post.  I am absolutely delighted to tell you that I have just received an email from Miss Rosemarie Morgan, the teacher in this photo.   Miss Morgan, now Mrs Weightman, tells us that it is her morning class and she has given us the names of all the little cuties in the photo. 

Miss Morgan's other Kindergarten cuties, 1967

They are, Front Row L-R:
Brenda Mallard, Violet Dalton, Theresa Kiley, Peggy Raymond, Carol Ann Lake, Tina Smith, Rosalind Murphy, Jackie Pink
Row 2:  Betty Bishop, Linda Hickey, Linda McCarthy, Darlene White, Madonna Taylor, Marie Fifield, Denise Purcell, Sheila Martin

Row 3:  Linda Hall, Maureen Holden, Donna Greening, Michelle O’Keefe, Linda Lee, Patricia Moores, Diane Carew, Susan Hayes

Patricia, I am really grateful to you for sharing this beautiful photo.  I hope some of the little ladies pictured here will be in touch to add a few more names.  Due to circumstances, it sometimes takes a little while to post things but be assured, everything eventually gets posted and we are ALWAYS thankful to the people who share their memories with us.  So please, if you have anything at all that you would like to share here with friends and former classmates, just send it along to

To Miss Morgan/Mrs Weightman, thank you so very much for taking the time to get in touch.  It is really great to have all the names and I am pretty certain that the ladies in the photo will be more than pleased to know that their Kindergarten teacher is still looking out for them.

Saturday, 26 May 2018


Maybe you know this already but I'll tell you anyway - the Presentation Sisters were the first in Newfoundland to introduce music into their schools on a daily basis.  Since those talented Irish ladies brought music to our schools, many excellent music teachers have followed in their footsteps.  St Patrick's Convent Schools had their fair share of such teachers over the generations. Mother Francis O'Toole, Mother Gerard Walker, Sr Presentation McCarthy, Sr Edwardine Smith and Miss Eleanor Lawton are just a few of that long line of dedicated women. All have left their mark but today's post concerns just one of the many.

Sr Mary Brendan Lynch arrived at St Patrick's Convent in 1967 and her years there were memorable for her and for the choirs she directed.  In 1973, Sr Brendan was invited to take her choir to Ottawa to perform at the Canadian Music Educators' Association Convention.  Due to Sr Brendan's talent and dedication, many successes and awards came to St Patrick's.    
Miss Eleanor Lawton, Sr M Brendan, Sr M Luke and some award winning choir members.  Madonna is second girl from Sr Luke. 

As well as talented, Sr Brendan is also well loved and respected by her former 'stars'! Recently two 'stars' contacted us with news of Sr Brendan.
Sr M Brendan and Madonna Taylor-Hurley

Madonna Taylor-Hurley sent us two photos of Sr Brendan.  Madonna said: "It's so wonderful to have reconnected with this lovely lady. After so many years ago being her little pupil, I am so proud to call Sister Brendan my friend."

Cathy Taylor Coffee also sent us a picture which was taken when she and Brenda Howard Coombes enjoyed a visit with Sr Brendan.  Cathy and Brenda spent  many years as members of St Patrick's Glee Club, which was so successfully directed by Sr Brendan.
Cathy Taylor Coffee, Brenda Howard Coombes
and Sr M Brendan Lynch

Sr Mary Brendan Lynch has been the recipient of many accolades, including being inducted into the Kiwanis Music Festival Hall of Fame in 2003.  From the photos, it is obvious that Sr Brendan still holds the hearts of many of her former pupils. Perhaps  that is the best accolade of all.

Monday, 21 May 2018


Rosalita Bambrick has very kindly shared this absolutely stunning picture with us.  It is St Patrick’s Convent School Graduating Class of 1957.  To make it even more wonderful, Rosalita, with a little help from Catherine Parsons Altini, has provided most of the names of the girls.  As always, if anyone out there can help fill in the couple of blanks, we would be most grateful if you would send the names to us at
Graduating Class of 1957
Rosalita Bambrick, ?, ?, Mary Colbert, Patricia Anne Roche, Mary Power, Sharon Horan, Mary Fagan, Carmelita Burke, Betty King, Claire Ann Connolly
ROW 2: L-R
Betty Baird, Catherine Healey, Yvonne Snow, Polly Kelly, Kathleen Ryan, Frances Cook, ?, Phyllis Silver, Catherine Parsons, Marie Northcott
Rosemary Luby, Margaret Birmingham, Anna Hamlyn, Regina Galway, Anita Stamp, Kathleen Power, ?

To top it off, Rosalita also shared a photo of a reunion of the Graduating Classes of 1957/58.  The reunion was held on 15 September 2017 and, it goes without saying, “a good time was had by all”!
Reunion of Graduating Classes of 1957/58

Aren't reunions just great? We certainly should have more of them. A grand reunion of the whole school would be wonderful.  Of course, it would take a lot of planning and a lot of work by some very competent people. Is anyone up for it?   I hesitate to even suggest that time might be running out for some of us. That is a very sobering thought!

Thank you so much Rosalita. These are really great pictures, bringing with them some very special memories. Your contribution and support is greatly appreciated.

Friday, 18 May 2018


Here we are again, another 24th May weekend.  I would venture to bet that you all have at least one 24th story from your youth that is worth the telling. Why not send it to us at and share it here with your friends and former school mates?  

If you follow this link
you can read about a couple of 24th escapades from the past!

The 24th May weekend has long been the weekend of the great escape to the side of some fabulous pond for a spot of fishing.  However, a word to the wise - don't take Moses with you!

I wonder where this pond is
I hope the sun shines and that you have an enjoyable and safe 24th May weekend.  

Saturday, 12 May 2018


I have received an email from our St Patrick's School friend, Teri Healey Evans, with a request for our support. Teri and her family, having lost a beloved sister to the awful disease, ALS, work very hard to help eradicate it.  They certainly deserve our support so, if you feel you can help in any way, please contact Teri at  or


Here is what Teri wrote.

"In honor of our sister Cindy (Healey) who sadly lost her battle with ALS on January 23, 2016 at the age of 58, my family has joined the WALK for ALS in St. John's slated for June 9th, 2018, because we would like to do our part to find a cure for ALS. ALS is also known as Lou Gehrig's disease, after the famous American baseball player who died of ALS in 1941. ALS is a progressive and ultimately fatal neuromuscular disease, which has no known cause, cure or drug therapy of consequence. This devastating disease slowly robs the individual of the ability to walk, talk, and ultimately, breathe. Researchers are getting close to finding a drug that could possibly slow down this disease but are still nowhere near to finding the cause or a cure.

We wouldn't wish this awful disease on anyone and if you had seen firsthand, like we did, what ALS can do to a person & their entire family, you certainly would not want to see it show its ugly face to you or any of your loved ones.

Please support our fundraising efforts by sponsoring either myself, June, Sharon or Charlie, by messaging one of us with your donation amount. We would gladly pick up your donation (within St. John's/Mt. Pearl) or you can forward it through e-transfer to or you can go directly to the ALS website for Team Cindy's link at

Also, if you would like to join TEAM CINDY & participate in the Walk yourself, you would very much be welcomed! I can provide you with a Sponsor Sheet....all you have to do is let me know!!

Thank You, 

Teri (Healey) Evans"
Please, let's help make this year's Team Cindy Walk an even greater success than last year's. 

Sunday, 29 April 2018

Nano Nagle - Our Foundress


Thursday, 26 April 2018


PBVM Symbol
Worn out by long days and nights of ministry, Nano Nagle collapsed in Cross Street, Cork, on her way to one of her schools. The Foundress of the Presentation Sisters died on Monday, 26th April 1784.  She was 65 years old.   In 1994 Pope John Paul II declared Nano Nagle a ‘Servant of God’, the first of four steps to canonisation.  The next step came in 2013 when Pope Francis bestowed the title ‘Venerable’ on Nano Nagle.
Venerable Nano Nagle