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Message from the Director

We promote development of natural family and community support, community awareness, education and advocacy.

Dear Friends,
Thomas Jefferson, one of our Founding Fathers, has been quoted as saying: “Democracy is not really the best form of Government…but just the safest. Th e best form would be a wise and caring monarch who would be able to accomplish much and get things done.” And I personally would like to add especially if that monarch was a person who had God’s most vulnerable citizens as a priority on his/her agenda and had no need to be the “superpower” of the world – especially if his/her kingdom had many unmet, problematic needs of its own.

When you consider what is happening today at every level of Government, the quote above seems to be the words of a very farseeing and wise president.

As I reflect on the forty-four years I have had the privilege of being the Executive Director of Misericordia, I have never been more concerned about the future of Misericordia and other human services as I am today. If we did not expect to have the continuous private support of so many of you, our future would be bleak. We would be foolish to be planning ahead with a 2013 Campaign to provide appropriate housing for our aging population which is growing each year. Where would they go if we were forced to discharge them? There are few alternatives to Misericordia available.

As many of you are aware, Misericordia stands in contradiction to a national trend which holds that “big is bad and all persons with disabilities, no matter how disabled they are, should be living in houses in neighborhoods, preferably with four or less people.” Even if I thought this direction was right for all persons in need, which I don’t, the additional government funding needed to support this approach does not appear to be a concern for the bureaucrats and advocates who are presenting this to government officials as the “right way, the only way.”

This approach also denies “choice” to families who know their most vulnerable member better than anyone else. And what will happen when persons living in these homes have needs that no individual home could ever meet? Will they be “dumped” in inappropriate nursing homes?!? This is one of my great fears!

Already at Misericordia, three persons who were enjoying life in our lovely isolated houses in neighborhoods have returned to Campus Residences. Th ey are now living in our McAuley Skilled Nursing Home and our Holbrook Assisted Living Residence. Their needs changed so radically over three to four years that these moves were necessary for the safety and welfare of the individuals. Th e only reason Misericordia can continue caring for them is because we are blessed being one of the few agencies who have the full continuum of care, from a skilled nursing home to houses in neighborhoods and many diff erent residences on Campus. When legislators and others visit us they are truly confused why Misericordia Heart of Mercy Center is not regarded by all, as a model for the country. As much as we appreciate their response, we don’t hold we are the only way. But we definitely
believe we are one very legitimate way!

If we don’t become more independent from Government funding, our future is uncertain. We are fully aware of the generosity of you, our many friends. But we must fi nd additional ways of private fundraising. Th e best tool we have to tell our story is a tour. When visitors see our happy and loving residents, our compassionate and caring staff , our beautiful environment and our many life giving programs, they leave feeling they have witnessed “God’s love in action.” Many want to become members of our Misericordia Family in the many varied ways which are possible.

If you want more information about the many opportunities Misericordia has to share our ministry, please don’t hesitate to call. Thank you for believing in us. May this spring time be a blessed one for you and yours.

Sister Rosemary Connelly