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People and organizations
University of St. Michael's College, John M. Kelly Library, Special Collections

Mosteller, Sue

  • http://viaf.org/viaf/92230632
  • Person
  • 1933-

Sister Sue Mosteller, CSJ, OC (1933-) was born in Ohio to Canadian parents. In eighth grade, Sue Mosteller was sent to boarding school with the Sisters of St. Joseph in Toronto. Her experience boarding with the Sisters of St. Joseph led her to join the order upon graduating high school. After joining, Mosteller was encouraged to teach by the sisters and spent 15 years teaching in Barrie, Kitimat, and Toronto.

In 1967, when Sue Mosteller was finishing her BA in English Literature, her friend took her to a lecture by Jean Vanier at the University of St. Michael’s College where he talked about L’Arche and life living with the disabled. Vanier’s talk moved Mosteller and she assisted with organizing a pilgrimage to Lourdes for people with disabilities, their families, and young people. These experiences were a turning point for Mosteller and in 1972 she requested and received permission to live and work at L’Arche Daybreak, the first L’Arche community in Canada. Mosteller quickly became an integral part of the L’Arche community and oversaw many large initiatives. In 1976, Mosteller became L'Arche Daybreak’s second community leader. In the mid-1980s, Mosteller was instrumental in inviting Henri Nouwen to join the Daybreak community as their pastor. In 1985, Mosteller established Dayspring Chapel, a centre for spiritual growth, with Henri Nouwen. Beyond the Daybreak community, Mosteller served as the first international coordinator of L'Arche after Jean Vanier for nine years. During that time, Mosteller expanded the L'Arche network from 30 to 65 countries.

Over the ten years Henri Nouwen was at Daybreak, Mosteller and him became close friends. In 1996, Mosteller was asked by Nouwen to be his literary executrix of his estate shortly before his death. As executrix, Mosteller oversaw the founding of the Henri J.M. Archives and Research Collection at the John M. Kelly Library at the University of St. Michael’s College in Toronto. Mosteller would continue to live within the Daybreak community for 40 years until 2011 when she left to live with a small group of sisters in a Toronto Convent.

On November 5, 2011, Mosteller received an Honorary Doctorate from Tyndale University College and Seminary in Toronto for her “lifelong commitment to sharing the love of God with many of society’s marginalized people and her significant contributions to Christian life and learning over several decades.”

On December 27, 2019, Mosteller was named to the Order of Canada for her dedication to improving the lives of people with intellectual disabilities, and for her decades of work as a leader of L’Arche.

Today she continues to be a member of L’Arche Daybreak, works as a Trustee for the Henri Nouwen Legacy, and gives retreats and lectures all over the world.

Séguin, Madeleine

  • Person
  • 1968-1993

Madeleine Séguin was the Secretary of the Faith and Sharing Federation from the movement’s inception in 1968 to 1993. She was also Secretary and Treasurer of the North American Committee from 1972-1993.

Pett, Douglas Ellory

  • Person
  • 1924-2005

The Rev. Dr. Douglas Ellory Pett died on February 18, 2005. He was Sacrist at Gloucester Cathedral from 1954 to 1958. He was School Chaplain at Gloucester King's School and taught English. His doctoral thesis was based on an examination of the sermons of Cardinal John Henry Newman. As Vicar of Gulval, Penzance, from 1961 to 1966 he first became interested in gardening. The main thrust of his ministry was as resident Chaplain at St. Mary's Hospital, Paddington, London, from 1966 to 1983. In retirement he developed further his interest in horticulture and garden history. This led to the publication of a series of books on the gardens of Cornwall. A frequent visitor to the Isles of Scilly, his research on horticulture and flower growing there were awarded the biennial prize for research in 2004 by the Royal Institute of Cornwall. He published two works on the subject, "Horticulture on the Isles of Scilly" and "The Narcissus Trade, 1870-1950".

Potvin family

  • Family

Dr. Laurent Potvin and his wife Mrs. Colette Potvin were lay members of the Papal Commission on Population and Birth Control.

The Papal Commission met in Rome from 1963 to 1966. The Commission was initially convened by Pope John XXIII and continued by Pope Paul VI after Pope John’s death in 1963. Originally, six members were appointed to the Commission and the group was later expanded into a two-part 79 member commission comprised of 64 lay persons (i.e. people who are not bishops, priests, or deacons in the Church) and 15 clerics. The mission of the Commission was to determine how the Church could change its position on birth control, due to rapid population growth, without undermining papal authority.

After three years of deliberation, the Commission concluded that it was not possible to make this change without undermining papal authority, but that the Church should change their position on contraception and birth control. The lay members voted 60 to 4 for change, and the clerics, 9 to 6 for change. Chairman of the Commission, Rev. Henri de Riedmatten, produced a final report, often referred to as the “Majority Report”, that reflected this call for change.

Despite the overwhelming vote of the members of the Commission, Pope Paul refused to alter the Vatican's stance on birth control citing that to do so would fundamentally undermine papal infallibility and, in 1968, wrote the ''Humanae Vitae'' encyclical which emphasized the continuation of the Vatican's opposition to contraception.

Catholic Church. Papal Birth Control Commission

  • Corporate body
  • 1963-1966

The Papal Commission on Population and Birth Control met in Rome from 1963 to 1966. The Commission was initially convened by Pope John XXIII and continued by Pope Paul VI after Pope John’s death in 1963. Originally, six members were appointed to the Commission and the group was later expanded into a two-part 79 member commission comprised of 64 lay persons (i.e. people who are not bishops, priests, or deacons in the Church) and 15 clerics. The mission of the Commission was to determine how the Church could change its position on birth control, due to rapid population growth, without undermining papal authority.

After three years of deliberation, the Commission concluded that it was not possible to make this change without undermining papal authority, but that the Church should change their position on contraception and birth control. The lay members voted 60 to 4 for change, and the clerics, 9 to 6 for change. Chairman of the Commission, Rev. Henri de Riedmatten, produced a final report, often referred to as the “Majority Report”, that reflected this call for change.

Despite the overwhelming vote of the members of the Commission, Pope Paul refused to alter the Vatican's stance on birth control citing that to do so would fundamentally undermine papal infallibility and, in 1968, wrote the ''Humanae Vitae'' encyclical which emphasized the continuation of the Vatican's opposition to contraception.

Watson, Wilfred

  • Person
  • 1911-1998

Wilfred Watson was born in Rochester, England in 1911 and at the age of fifteen immigrated to Canada with his family, settling in Duncan, British Columbia. Watson attended the University of British Columbia from 1940 to 1943, earning a B.A. in English literature. During the Second World War, he served in the Canadian navy and after the war he continued his education at the University of Toronto, receiving an M.A. in 1946 and a Ph.D. in 1951. In 1949, Wilfred Watson was employed as a special lecturer in English at the University of British Columbia and from 1951 to 1953 he was a professor in the Department of English at the University of Alberta, teaching at the Calgary campus. In 1954, he transferred to the Edmonton campus, remaining there as Professor of English until his retirement in 1977. In 1980 Watson moved to Nanaimo, B.C. with his wife, author and professor, Sheila Watson. He passed away in Nanaimo in 1998, at the age of 87.

Wilfred Watson's writing career was prolific and continuously evolving and developing. T.S.Eliot accepted his first volume of poetry, Friday's Child, for Faber and Faber, publishing it in 1955, and Watson received the 1955 Governor General's Award for it. Between 1955 and 1956, Watson lived in Paris as the recipient of a Canadian Government Overseas Fellowship. Here he was introduced to the theatre of the absurd, and in the following years explored this interest with his own writing and directing activities. In the early 1960s, Watson made contact with Marshall McLuhan and developed a growing interest in McLuhan's theories, culminating with their collaboration on the study, From Cliche to Archetype. Watson started work on his first major play, Cockcrow and the Gulls, in the mid-1950s, and it was first performed at the University of Alberta's Studio Theatre in March 1962.

During the 1960s Watson had his most prolific period of playwriting; Trial of Corporal Adam was produced in 1963; Wail for two Pedestals in 1964; and Let's murder Clytemnestra according to the principles of Marshall Mcluhan in 1969. A play for Canada's centennial, O holy ghost, dip your finger in the blood of Canada, and write, I love you was produced in 1967. During the 1970s, Watson concentrated on writing poetry, and his second volume of poetry, The Sorrowful Canadians and Other Poems, was published in 1972. This volume of poetry experimented with using different typefaces and repetitions, and Watson later introduced number-grid verse in a volume titled I Begin With Counting. A second volume of number-grid verse, Mass on Cowback, was published in 1982.

The 1980s also saw Watson return to writing for the stage; The Woman Taken in Adultery, a short play, was performed at the Edmonton Fringe Festival in 1987 and a major play trilogy, Gramsci x 3 was produced by Studio Theatre in 1986. Wilfred Watson also wrote some short stories, essays, and a novel, although most went unpublished.

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