Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate. Province of Alberta-Saskatchewan

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Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate. Province of Alberta-Saskatchewan

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        The Oblate Province of Alberta-Saskatchewan was created on January 20th, 1921, from the Vicariate of Missions of Alberta-Saskatchewan. The earliest Oblate presence in the west was first overseen by the Vicariate of Missions of St. Boniface, Manitoba. In 1868, the Oblate Congregation also established the Vicariate of Missions of St. Albert, and in 1864 the Vicariate of Missions of Athabaska-Mackenzie. The Vicariate of Missions of St. Albert was divided in 1891 to administer the west and the north, into the Vicariate of Missions of St. Albert and the Vicariate of Missions of Saskatchewan. These merged again in 1906 into the Vicariate of Missions of Alberta-Saskatchewan; in 1921 the Vicariate became the Province of Alberta-Saskatchewan.

        The new province consisted of 146 members and physically encompassed much of Alberta and part of Saskatchewan, from 55 North latitude, down to its southern boundary of the Canadian-American border, and from the Rocky Mountains and the South Saskatchewan River from the Alberta-Saskatchewan border to the south of Saskatoon and east to the Manitoba border.

        The Province of Alberta-Saskatchewan was both the civil corporation and the canonical entity for the Oblates in the west. The Provincial administration consisted of the Provincial and a council of up to five advisors, the Provincial Treasurer, who advised on financial matters, as well as various committees as required. The Provincial was responsible for administrative matters, obediences and assignments, community life and operations of missions. The province also oversaw the administration and operation of numerous Indian Residential Schools, hospitals and orphanages.

        The responsibilities of the Provincial administration within the Province of Alberta-Saskatchewan continued along the lines of its predecessors: to manage the administration, the religious operations, and the financial aspects of the corporation, and to direct all the activities of the region that aimed to evangelize, to establish mission stations, elementary and advanced schools, orphanages, hospitals, dispensaries and carry out other works of Christian charity, to erect chapels and churches. This included the monitoring of properties and investments, pensions and personnel finances, project funds, and funds used for training and material missionary work in the communities. By 1935, the Province of Alberta-Saskatchewan consisted of 155 personnel, and was responsible for all the First Nations and Métis missions within the Edmonton, Calgary and Prince-Albert Archdioceses. The Province was also responsible for the administration of numerous Indian Residential Schools in Alberta-Saskatchewan, including those at Brocket, Cardston Cluny, Delmas, Duck Lake, Dunbow, Hobbema, Onion Lake and St. Paul. The Province possessed the francophone newspapers La Survivance in Alberta, and Le Patriote in Saskatchewan a Cree publication, an orphanage at Prince Albert, two pilgrimage sites, eight schools, including the Juniorat Saint-Jean and numerous churches and missions. The Province established various organizations for Catholic education, including a retreat house, the Star of the North, as well as the Juniorat, later Collège Saint-Jean.

        Following a division in the Oblate Provinces of the west based on language or origin of personnel, the Province of Alberta-Saskatchewan was considered a French language province.

        By 1965, the Province consisted of 145 members who carried out charity, parish and educational work. By 1982, the Province consisted of a number of local districts with 83 members: the District of St-Paul, South District, District of Saskatchewan, District of Hobbema, District of St-Albert, District of St-Jean, Foyer Grandin and the Provincial House. The governing of each district was entrusted to a Council consisting of a Superior and two advisers.

        The Oblate Province of Alberta-Saskatchewan ceased to exist in 1986 when it merged with the Oblate Vice-Provinces of Grouard and Mackenzie to form Grandin Province.

        Superiors, Vicariate of Missions of St. Albert:

        • Vital Grandin (1867-1897)
        • Emile Legal (1897-1906)
        • Henri Grandin (1906-1921)

        Superior, Vicariate of Missions of Saskatchewan:

        • Albert Pascal (1891-1906)

        Superior, Vicariate of Missions of Alberta-Saskatchewan:

        • Henri Grandin (1906-1921)

        Provincials, Province of Alberta-Saskatchewan:

        • Henri Grandin (1921-1923)
        • François Blanchin (1923-1926)
        • Jean-Baptiste Beys (1926-1929)
        • Ubald Langlois (1929-1938)
        • Henri Routhier (1938-1944)
        • Armand Boucher (1944-1950)
        • J. Osias Fournier (1950-1956)
        • Guy Michaud (1956-1962)
        • Maurice J. Lafrance (1962-1965)
        • Georges-Marie Latour (1965-1971)
        • Thomas Bilodeau (1971-1975)
        • Joseph Regnier (1975-1979)
        • Maurice Joly (1979-1985)


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        Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate. Grandin Province (1986-2003)

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        Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate. Grandin Province is the successor of Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate. Province of Alberta-Saskatchewan

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