Soul Sisters is an intimate and insightful look into the lives of the Catholic Sisters of Manitoba. Humour, feminism, intelligence and compassion flow through their actions as we follow them throughout their daily work in various communities of service to others.
Madeleine’s hand outlines the conceptual drawing of her sculpture designed to honour the remarkable story of Catholic Sisters of Manitoba, women who have contributed immensely to shaping the province by founding the first schools, hospitals, orphanages, homes for the aged, and other social service agencies to help the poor and vulnerable. As we follow the visually arresting stages in the design, fabrication and unveiling of this sculpture, Madeleine explains its significance and symbolism from her artistic point of view, as well as her personal vision of these women in a contemporary society and within a patriarchal construct that is the Catholic Church.
Woven into this artistic process is an intimate and reflective look into the lives of these very women, some in their eighties, told in their voices. Humour, feminism, intelligence and compassion flow through their stories as they recount their life experiences in Canadian cities, villages, and the North as well as abroad in countries such as Brazil, Cameroun and Africa.
Throughout their groundbreaking work in our society’s social fabric, their sisterhood, sense of social justice, and religious faith upholds them through challenges that test even their own faith. These refreshing and articulate women reflect on the future of their work and their kind, in a time where women no longer seek out the nunnery to affect change in this contemporary world.
As the commemorative monument is unveiled we come to understand that Madeleine’s sculpture is a testament to the deep and permanent imprint the Catholic Sisters of Manitoba have and continue to leave on our community.