The Ursuline Sisters hope to soon sell off their home in Chatham, but plan to continue to live there.
Villa Angela on McNaughton Avenue, pending a final review, will be sold to Jarlette Health Services, which will in turn lease the space back to the sisters. The sisters moved into the facilty in 2006.
Sister Theresa Campeau, community leader for the Ursuline Sisters in Chatham, said the sisters decided back in 2017 to eventually seek a buyer for the property, which houses more than 50 of the sisters. But the selling opportunity popped up faster than anticipated.
“We indicated we were looking at our future and wanted to make a decision while we could still be making them with the greatest involvement of our community members,” she said of her aging order. “There was no immediate pressure to go out and find a buyer. But possibilities opened up to us and we explored them.”
If all goes as planned, Campeau said the deal could be completed at the end of the year.
“This decision also supports our collective desire to remain in Chatham-Kent and to continue to be active in the area long into the future,” Campeau said.
The collective hope of the Sisters was to find a potential purchaser who held similar values with a care focused core purpose and they identified in Jarlette Health Services an organization which could be part of the way forward, she added.
“In conversation, we quickly recognized that we, the Ursulines, and Jarlette Health Services together, endeavour to follow in the footsteps of our founders, and remain committed to those we serve in a spirit of openness, devotion and compassion,” Campeau said. “As we prepare to let go of the ownership of Villa Angela, we believe that our call to be a compassionate presence and witness to the Gospel will continue to be our motivation and purpose in life.”
She anticipates a seamless transition for the Ursuline members at the Villa.
For 159 years, the Ursuline Sisters have lived and worked in Chatham Kent. Mother Xavier Le Bihan and her companions arrived in May, 1860 at the request of the people of Chatham and were soon involved in education and other areas of ministry.
The sisters opened Villa Angela in 2006. The main building and the associated townhouses have a living capacity for 65 people.