Sisters of Providence ministries honored by community
A handful of organizations based in West Terre Haute recently came together to honor ministries of the Sisters of Providence of Saint Mary-of-the-Woods, Indiana, and other individuals for their efforts in helping provide for those in need in the community.
Officials from West Vigo High School, the West Vigo Community Center and Emily’s Walk collaborated to create the “Emmies” in honor of the late Emily Herrington, a longtime resident of the community.
This year, the first ceremony for the honors, inductees included Providence Food Pantry, The Connecting Link and Sister Dorothy Rasche, SP, and The Helping Hands in addition to Gary Garzolini, Brad Kesler, Ann Williams and Bill Wolfe.
The banquet took place on Saturday, April 23, at the West Terre Haute Community Center. Each recipient received a plaque during the ceremony.
Chris Herrington, co-founder of Emily’s Walk, said the idea of the awards ceremony stems from a conversation a few years ago during the annual Emily’s Walk, which began in 2016.
“We thought it would be a wonderful way to set up community recognition,” Herrington said. “A way to reward people who have done great things in the community. They should get recognition.”
Chris said his mother was known to walk all over West Terre Haute. After she passed away, his family created Emily’s Walk as a way to remember her and to increase awareness of Dewey Point and the Wabashiki Fish and Wildlife Area.
“This was a spectacular event,” he said regarding the banquet. “There were probably 120 people there. It’s the kind of event that is pretty rare for any community. The people treasured the awards and recognition. It was very heartening.”
Sister Dorothy was pleased to receive the honor and added it is a reflection on the entire community.
“West Terre Haute has wonderful people working together for the betterment of the whole,” Sister Dorothy said. “The clinic/pharmacy is just the latest example of The Connecting Link’s board and the community working together to meet the community’s needs.
“I feel privileged to work with so many good and caring people. The award is a pat on the back for all of us!”
Sister Joseph Fillenwarth, SP, receiving the award for Providence Food Pantry, said it’s an honor to be recognized.
“The pantry belongs to all of us,” she said. “We are made up of local churches and organizations. We support each other.”
Branch Manager of the Hometown Savings Bank West Terre Haute branch Melissa Rafter, who resides in West Terre Haute and is a board member for the West Terre Haute Community Center, said both The Connecting Link and Providence Food Pantry are vital for the community.
“The Connecting Link is a big part of our community,” Rafter said. “Sister Dorothy goes above and beyond. And Providence Food Pantry has had such a major impact on our community. The amount of food they provide is simply amazing!”