Mother Margaret George Statue Returns to Motherhouse Grounds
It’s been more than a year since Sisters, Associates and visitors to the SC Motherhouse have been greeted along the front avenue by the life-size statue of Mother Margaret George, founder of the Cincinnati Community. On Wednesday, May 3, Margaret returned to her prominent spot. Throughout the years that the statue has been situated along the front avenue, those living at or visiting the Motherhouse have found the benches resting near her a treasured place to pray, relax and take in the beauty that surrounds her.
As Margaret returns to her dedicated spot, it piques interest in the statue itself and the significance of its creation. The statue was commissioned in 1997 in anticipation of the 150th anniversary of the Sisters of Charity congregation in 2002. The late S. Peggy Beaudette, SCNY, was asked to sculpt Mother Margaret – the driving force behind the endeavor to create a new community of SCs dedicated to carrying on the charism and works of Elizabeth Seton. The sculpture of Margaret is fiberglass with a bonded bronze finish. She is holding a book, signifying that she was an educator and greatly loved by her students. Margaret’s outstretched hand pointing west symbolizes that when she arrived in Cincinnati, it was considered “the west” and our Motherhouse is the furthest west of all the Seton communities. Alan Wittich, Motherhouse grounds manager, conceived and supervised the building of the fountain on which the statue rests.
On March 18, 2001, the day of the dedication, hundreds of Sisters and friends came together to honor Margaret and celebrate. Following liturgy, those attending processed to the statue carrying white roses and recalling Margaret’s poem “Flowers”. Sisters Mary Ellen Murphy, SC president at the time, and Peggy Beaudette, sculptor, led the prayers and blessed the statue.After more than a decade of braving the outdoor elements, it was determined that the statue was in need of some care. Margaret’s presence along the front avenue was greatly missed and the statue’s reinstallation on Wednesday was anticipated by many in the Motherhouse. This prayerful woman - who lived the deep connection between her love of God and her love of others – draws people to her and the peaceful spot on the Motherhouse grounds where she can be visited. As mentioned in the dedication prayer in 2001: “May all who look upon this statue be blessed by you, our loving God.”
S. Judith Metz (right) visits S. Peggy Beaudette, SCNY, as she works on sculpting Mother Margaret George.
Motherhouse grounds manager Alan Wittich, with S. Barbara Hagedorn, conceived and supervised the building of the fountain on which the statue rests.
The dedication for the statue of Mother Margaret George along the Motherhouse front avenue took place on March 18, 2001.