June 28, 2013
Mercy Hospital of Buffalo staff and the Sisters of Mercy recently gathered together to bless and dedicate a new Mercy Cornerstone Monument in the hospital’s Emergency Center Meditation Garden. The event featured the installation of a new time capsule by Mercy Hospital associates.
In addition, items found in the time capsules from the hospital’s original 1926 cornerstone and 1967 McAuley addition cornerstone were on display at the event. The cornerstones had been removed during the construction of the 2010 Emergency Center addition.
A plaque that sits on a pedestal in front of the new monument conveys its meaning, as it reads:
This monument represents the history and the sacrifices of so many who made Mercy Hospital of Buffalo a reality, beginning with the Sisters of Mercy who founded their first hospital on Tifft Street in 1904. The monument contains the original cornerstones for the 1926 Abbott Road hospital, the 1967 McAuley addition, and the 2010 Emergency Center addition. It also houses a time capsule with contents documenting Mercy Hospital at the time of this dedication in 2013, with the intention to open the capsule in 2063. The greatest of monuments could not represent all the compassion, mercy and sacrifices that are held within the walls of this hospital. It cannot begin to tell the stories of joy, healing and comfort, nor the dedication of the countless Sisters of Mercy, associates, physicians and volunteers, who always have and always will reveal the healing love of Jesus to those in need.
Mercy Hospital Staff Suggested Cornerstone Monument
“When the 1926 and 1967 cornerstones were displaced during our recent Emergency Center construction, we were trying to come up with ideas on how we could incorporate them into our new building,” said Mercy Hospital President & CEO C.J. Urlaub at the June 24 event.
“The suggestion for a cornerstone monument came from our Mercy Hospital staff, and we were pleased to bring this idea to fruition as we stand here today.”
Sisters of Mercy Blessed Monument
Sisters Natalie Rossi, RSM, Councilor; provided remarks on behalf of the Sisters of Mercy , New York, Pennsylvania, Pacific West Community. Leading the blessing ceremony were Sister Sheila Walsh, RSM,Councilor; and Sister Peggy Gorman, RSM, Chief Development Officer, of the Sisters of Mercy, who also performed the reading of the monument plaque that she authored. Sisters Sheila and Peggy also served in key roles on the Cornerstone Monument and Time Capsule Committee.
“As we bless this monument with the grace of your Holy Spirit, may it be a symbol of the dedication and commitment of so many people including sisters, bishops, clergy, physicians, nurses and a myriad of employees,” said Sister Sheila Walsh during the service.
Installation of New Time Capsule
Several Mercy Hospital associates participated in the installation of the new time capsule, including Mary Dietz of the Laboratory Department who recently celebrated 51 years of service to Catholic Health.
The capsule was filled with historical documentation and memorabilia about Mercy Hospital and other items representing 2013 such as discarded cell phones; a jump drive containing videos, photos and other digital content; and an empty paper medical record describing the changeover to electronic medical records (EMR).
The event also featured a display of items found in the 1926 and 1967 time capsules including a South Buffalo News and Catholic Union & Times from 1926; reliquaries from Pope Pius X and St. Lucia Filippini; religious medals and coins from 1926; and old journals, photos and newsletters.
Ceremony Recognized Architects Who Donated Services
Also recognized at the ceremony was John Shaflucas of Shaflucas Architects who donated the professional services to design the monument.