Providence Associates

Providence Associates are individuals who desire to share the mission and spirituality of Providence but do not seek vowed membership in the congregation. They are lay women and men who hold Gospel values as the compelling force in their lives. These women and men want to make a difference in their world. They support one another in their concern for the unfortunate of our times – those who lack resources of all kinds. From early on, the Sisters of Providence have had persons associated with them to help serve the needs of others. Our particular Providence mission began in the caring presence of our foundress, Blessed Emilie Gamelin. She was inspired by her love for all people and by her devotion to Our Mother of Sorrows in responding to the needs of children, the sick, the elderly, people with handicaps, prisoners, the mentally ill and especially the poor. As a young woman, Emilie belonged to the Ladies of Charity before establishing the religious community of the Sisters of Providence. She continued to make the Ladies an important element in the mission of Providence after the congregation was formed.

What is the special gift of the mission and charism of Providence?

A charism is a gift of the Holy Spirit given to a person or group for others. Associates share the gift of manifesting God’s Providence and our Mother of Sorrows, as expressed in their compassionate love and service to the poor. A mission means that a person is sent to do God’s work – making God known and loved in a particular way. Providence Associates proclaim these mysteries and make God known and loved through their lives and ministries.

“Don’t think that it’s a small thing to be devoted to the relief of those in distress, for we’re giving pleasure to God.” Saint Vincent de Paul (XI:17)

Would you like to know more?  Download the Providence Associates Brochure by clicking on the button below.

“Don’t think that it’s a small thing to be devoted to the relief of those in distress, for we’re giving pleasure to God.” Saint Vincent de Paul (XI:17)

Would you like to know more?  Download the Providence Associates Brochure by clicking on the button below.

Becoming an Associate

The process begins with an initial inquiry by an individual. An orientation for the prospective Associate is arranged. This lasts for six months to one year. In the beginning, the focus is on the history, spirituality & mission of the Sisters of Providence. The second stage focuses on the individual and their commitment to personal prayer, reading and studying the history of the congregation and the Church, attending regular meetings and other gatherings, both formal and social. Following the orientation, and after a letter of acceptance from the Congregation has been received by the perspective Associate, a simple commitment ceremony is held.

Learn more about the work of Providence Associates around the world.

Associate’s Commitment

The mission of Providence is enriched and extended by women and men Associates who are drawn to live the spirit and charism of the Sisters of Providence, in compassionate care for the poor and most in need. Providence Associates serve on a variety of committees and work in their daily lives to make Providence known. Providence Associates of Holy Angels Province serve in western Canada and are divided by region – Coastal, Central, Southern and Northern.  This commitment is renewed every year.

Learn more about the work of Providence Associates around the world.



Journey on becoming a Providence Associate
Abby Begna & Vera Gutierrez – PA’s reception on Dec 12, 2021

Vera Gutierrez..

“The first time I learned about Providence Associates was when I attended the 175th Anniversary Celebration of the Sisters of Providence in March 2019. I remember enjoying many long talks with special women most of whom had been Associates for several years. I remember thinking back then “Maybe one day down the road I could become an Associate also”. My journey started about a year ago when I was asked by a Sister whether I would be interested in becoming an Associate. It felt like the right time, and I started learning more about the history of the Sisters of Providence. Reading the books of the Foundresses deeply moved me and I thought if only I could help others a little bit the way they did, I would feel happy and satisfied. I’m also glad I was able to learn more about the Providence Associates and the work they do during orientation sessions this past summer.

Then came the Reception on December 12th. It was wonderful to meet the Associates for the first time in person since all the meetings I had attended prior to then were via Zoom. The ceremony was very special. I am grateful to the Sisters and Associates for welcoming me into the Providence Associates Family and I look forward to doing God’s work and being of service more of the time. Warmest thanks.”

Abby Begna..

“My journey with Providence Associates started a couple of years ago.  At the time, I was fundraising for a mission trip to Beirut, Lebanon.  When the Sisters heard my story, they rallied around me to help by preparing packages of sanitary items, donating money, and offering their prayers.  Through that, I got to experience the Sisters’ generous hearts.   They made me feel I was part of a bigger mission.  So, when I started attending the Providence Associates meetings, I felt like I found my place of service.  I am grateful to Sr. Mae (Mary Grace Valdez) and Sr. Christina Wong for introducing me to the PAs.

Since then, I have learned so much from the books suggested by Sr. Christina Wong about the foundresses of the charity.  These three women that went before us have gone through a lot, but they stood their ground in their faith and service.  The story of Mother Gamelin made me cry, laugh, feel inspired, encouraged me to be more and do more.  It also encouraged me to trust God in all situations.  She was an ordinary woman who lived an extraordinary life, that is why we still talk about her.

It is such a privilege to be part of an amazing group of people who are dedicated to serving the community and God.  The life of service in any capacity has always been attractive to me.  This is because I witnessed my mother serve the young, the poor, the elderly by opening our home to anyone who would need it.  This has set me on a path of wanting to serve others.  Now I have this opportunity to journey with the Providence Associates and I feel so blessed.

Here is the scripture I read at the ceremony of acceptance – “You are the salt of the earth.  But if the salt loses its saltiness, with what will it be salted?  It is no longer useful at all, except to be cast out and trampled under by men.

You are the light of the world.  A city set on a mountain cannot be hidden. And they do not light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a lampstand, so that it may shine to all who are in the house.
So then, let your light shine in the sight of men, so that they may see your good works, and may glorify your father, who is in heaven.” Mathew 5:13-16

This scripture is unique to me because it shows me how to live daily.  Sometimes, I want bigger goals, bigger impacts but this one brings me back to the details.  How should I behave toward others, toward everyone, young, old, poor, rich?  Do I serve them, love them, and bring the good flavours of this world to them equally?  Am I making things brighter and better or is it the other way around?    It challenges me to be a change agent in every situation.  But first, those changes need to happen within me.  I am on a journey of transformation, and prayerfully commit myself to bring light to the Providence Associates team. “


3005 119 Street, NW
Edmonton, Alberta
Tel: (780) 436-7250


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