Statue of Saint Louis‑Marie de Montfort
From its foundation, the statue of Saint Louis‑Marie de Montfort adorned the entrance of Hôpital Montfort. It was moved several times in order to preserve it during major renovation and construction work.
This was the case in the late 1980s and early 1990s, when the hospital built the connecting tower and south wing. Once the work was finished, the intent was to restore the statue to its original place in the entrance hall. But where had it gone? It took another twenty years before it was found in the basement of the Notre‑Dame‑de‑Lourdes Church and then repatriated.
In the mid-2000s, the statue left the hospital again. Given the scope of construction work contemplated, storing it at the Daughters of Wisdom convent on Montreal Road seemed the best course of action.
Hospital administrators are now considering the possibility of giving it a place of honour on the hospital's grounds.
The Latin word caritas is engraved in the floor of the original main entrance. It means charity or love and symbolizes the philosophy of care upheld by Montfort’s founders. Indeed, the Daughters of Wisdom dispensed care with respect and tenderness from the time the institution first opened. They embodied the ideal of altruistic love through concrete acts of devotion and compassion to ease the physical and spiritual suffering of others."Quand un feu s’allume… ," Écho, Écho, Écho, January-February-March, issue 25.
Under the 2007-2010 grand project of construction, management decided to retain this symbol as a reminder of the founders’ spirit of compassion. Compassion remains one of the fundamental values, along with respect, engagement and excellence. If ever we neglect this value, we need only glance at the floor, to see it plainly carved in stone.
March 22 Medal
In March 2004, Hôpital Montfort announced the creation of the March 22 Medal in commemoration of the great rally of March 22, 1997, when close to 10,000 demonstrators turned out at the Ottawa Civic Centre to support the SOS Montfort cause.
With 22 copies of the medal minted, the purpose of the medal is to honour the determination, tenacity and pride of the people who fought for the hospital’s survival.
Since 2004, ten medals have been awarded.
- In 2004, the first medal was awarded to staff members as an expression of gratitude. They played an important role during the uncertain times spanning a long five-year period.
- In June 2006, at the “New Montfort” ground-breaking ceremony, the hospital awarded a medal to the Honorable Dalton McGuinty, Premier of Ontario.
- Over the years, medals have been awarded to pillars of the SOS Montfort movement: Gérald Savoie, President and Chief Executive Officer of Montfort from 1987 to 2009; Michelle de Courville Nicol, President of the hospital’s Board of Trustees from 1995 to 2001, Gisèle Lalonde, President of SOS Montfort from 1997 to 2002; to the Honourable Mauril Bélanger, Member of Parliament for Ottawa-Vanier and a tireless defender of the rights of Francophone minority communities; and to the Daughters of Wisdom, founders of the hospital (2017).
- Four other people have received a posthumous medal for various contributions and services rendered to the hospital: Roger Bernard (2006), Pierre J.C. Lefebvre (2009), Michel Gratton (2011) and Jean‑Robert Gauthier (2012).
March 22 Avenue
In March 1998, the laneway linking Montreal Road to the hospital was renamed Avenue du 22 mars (March 22 Avenue). This name commemorates the anniversary of the great rally of solidarity held at the Ottawa Civic Centre on March 22, 1997.
La Francophonie Monument
On October 13, 2010, a monument to La Francophonie was unveiled on hospital property near the Montreal Road entrance. Like the other monuments to La Francophonie, the Montfort version includes an oversized Franco-Ontarian flag. A commemorative and heritage area was also set up alongside the monument. The words engraved on the surface of the monument come from the health and social services fields. The monument to La Francophonie is a symbol of the French fact, promotes the added value of the Francophonie to the National Capital and stands as an important symbol of Ontario’s Francophonie.
On June 18, 1997, a veritable parade of community leaders, including Gisèle Lalonde, President of SOS Montfort, and Msgr. Paul Marchand, Auxiliary Bishop of Ottawa, exited the main entrance of the hospital, heading toward Montreal Road. Each participant carried a brick to build a symbolic monument on the hospital grounds.
According to the instigator of this theatrical event, Michel Gratton, (translation) "the monument, deliberately made of bricks … was reminiscent of the insulting comments by the Premier [of Ontario] Mike Harris, [who described] Montfort as a pile of "bricks and mortar”. The monument … was [a] symbol of the steely determination of a community unwilling to bend to the lack of understanding and intransigence of those who were trying to pass it off as insignificant.”
(Excerpt from the book by Michel Gratton, Montfort – La lutte d’un peuple, Centre franco-ontarien de ressources pédagogiques, 2003.)
Michel Gratton named it the "counter-monument". However, the symbol is also known by two other names: one given by its sculptor, Yves (le Valencien) Leduc, "Ô francophones anonymes d’Amérique", and another given by the leaders of the SOS Montfort movement and reporters, the “SOS Montfort Resistance Monument”.
On December 17, 2015, the counter-monument was as finally been given a permanent, prominent place near the main entrance of Hôpital Montfort - thus marking the last phase of construction of the New Montfort, which had begun in 2006.
Montfort Brand Image
In the mid-1970s, a stylized M began to appear on the hospital’s letterhead. This symbol became a trademark of the New Montfort in 2006. This distinctive logo readily identifies the institution as a hospital centred on the community, where patients remain the main focus of the people who work there.
Emblematic pins have been created over the years to underscore highlights of the hospital’s history:
Tenacity and Perseverance Pin
The pin and its motto, Ténacité et perseverance (tenacity and perseverance), underscore the efforts of Montfort staff to confront the threat of the hospital’s closure. The hospital distributed the pin to its employees and officials after the Government of Ontario announced that it would not take its case to the Supreme Court of Canada in February 2002.
Benefactors’ and Donors’ Pin
Bearing the hospital’s trademark "M", this pin was designed in 2002 and is handed out to donors in acknowledgement of their support and dedication to the Montfort Hospital Foundation.
Montfort Hospital Foundation Angel’s Program Pin
Designed in 2011 for a program created by the Montfort Hospital Foundation, the Montfort Hospital Angels Program, this pin is awarded to Montfort doctors, employees or volunteers honoured by a patient, a patient’s family or a visitor for their outstanding care and service. The pin is handed out to recipients in front of their peers.
Franco-Ontarian Solidarity Pin
Designed in 2012, the Franco-Ontarian Solidarity pin marks the 15th anniversary of the great rally (Grand Ralliement) of March 22, 1997.
Share your souvenirs from Montfort with us: email@example.com
Discover other highlights of Montfort...
Learn about Montfort in its early years. (1947-1969).
Daughters of Wisdom