Blog Archives

Jordi Bonet Murals a Gift for All People of the North

IMG_20140902_122056

Jordi Bonet was born in Spain and became one of Quebec’s major artists through murals, painting, sculptures and ceramics. The panel notes how he lost his right arm at the age of 9 and had to learn these talents with his left. He has brilliant public works at the Montreal Metro, JFK Airport in New York and various churches throughout Quebec and Ontario in addition to his piece on the Great Northern Peninsula. Bonet passed away on Christmas Day in 1979 at the age of 47 succumbing to leukemia.

The Jordi Bonet Murals are a true gift to the people of the North, exhibited for all to see at the rotunda of the Charles Curtis Memorial Hospital, St. Anthony.

Honouring all those who have dedicated their lives to the Grenfell Mission

There is a special recognition to Dr. Charles S. Curtis, an unselfish servant to the people of the coast in Northern Newfoundland and Labrador contributing 48 years of his life to improving health, childcare, education, agriculture and other initiatives as part of the Grenfell Mission.

1012404_10152698429949259_1601742389461693849_n

Additionally, the Grenfell Mission thanks all past and future generations who have and will take on the challenge of improving the quality of life for the people of the North. No visit to the Great Northern Peninsula is complete without seeing such a public work of art that is on display at a hospital, where the Grenfell Legacy flourished for more than a century.

Thank you to those who been a part of the Grenfell Mission as the International Grenfell Association celebrates its centennial year. We must keep building and reaching out.  The Great Northern Peninsula has connections with the Rockefellers, the Colgate fortune, with volunteers such as Josephine Colgate volunteering with the Grenfell Mission, American Presidents, British Royalty, and even Wilbur & Orville Wright. There are many stories to tell, outreach and an ability to re-connect. As we reflect upon the past, we must also look toward the future where the Great Northern Peninsula is one that thrives on success and continuous improvement.

Live Rural NL –

Christopher Mitchelmore, MHA
The Straits-White Bay North
@MitchelmoreMHA

A Hospital Like No Other – Visit the Rotunda in St. Anthony, NL

Curtis Memorial Hospital was built-in the 1960’s – a sophisticated medical facility at the time servicing the Great Northern Peninsula and many parts of Labrador. The John M. Grey Centre, a modern personal care facility is adjacent to the hospital and now falls under the banner of Labrador-Grenfell Health. Unlike most medical facilities – this hospital has a rotunda with a unique offering of murals that are dedicated to the people of Northern Newfoundland & Labrador.

These are the Jordi Boney Murals, which circulate around the Main Entrance. This ceramic masterpiece is forever a gift to the people and our way of living. One will see images of people, fish, trees, snowshoes and water. An important means of subsisting from the land & sea.

If you have the opportunity the next time you are in St. Anthony pull into the Hospital and take a few moments to find the meaning behind the images circling the walls.

The Great Northern Peninsula has a unique offering!

Live Rural NL –

Christopher Mitchelmore, MHA
The Straits-White Bay North

Emperor Napoleon’s Tomb – Paris, France

The Napoleonic Wars had an impact on the settlement on the Island of Newfoundland during 1803-1815. The withdrawal of the warring nations from the salt cod fishery gave Newfoundland a monopoly in such a lucrative industry. During these years prosperity came with increase in standards of living and brought great social change.

While in France, my mother and I visited the Hotel des Invalides and Napoleon’s Tomb.

Napolean's Tomb

Dome Artwork

Miniature of the Hotel des Invalides and Napoleon's Tomb

The Invalides complex with Dome Church, built in 1670 was a military hospital. It has beautiful gardens, which are lined by canons. There is a focus of Napoleon’s life and death.

It is one of the places you can see while in France.

Live Rural NL

Christopher Mitchelmore

We will achieve in the future, as we have in the past…

Sir Dr. Wilfred Thomason Grenfell

As I continue with my vacation on June 27, 2010…no trip to St. Anthony could have been complete without a visit to Grenfell Historic Properties. The scene was 1892 when Dr. William Thomason Grenfell, a new practitioner of the UK decides to join the Royal National Mission to Deep Sea Fisherman. Dr. Grenfell came to rural regions of Labrador during that first year. Medical and social conditions were so deplorable that led Dr. Grenfell to return, but with the help of a couple of doctors, nurses and a hospital boat. His mission had began to bring medical, social services and hope through preaching to the people to rural Newfoundland and Labrador.

Dr. Grenfell had a passion and strong belief to make life better for those around him. His faith in himself and the inspiration he had on others led to monumental developments which started the Grenfell Mission.

He began developing cottage hospitals, fundraising and expanding services to various regions. By 1912 he had established the International Grenfell Association, which gained international recognition by 1914. Dr. Grenfell had began to take on many ambitious projects including developing schools, orphanages, social services, preaching, industrial projects (Grenfell Handicrafts), co-operatives, and agricultural sites, as well as authoring books, articles and creating artwork to sell in the form of Christmas cards. Additionally, Dr. Grenfell began promoting the mission to many renown and influential figures from across the world including former Presidents of the United States, Prime Ministers of England and Prime Ministers of Canada, as well as industrialists and other philanthropists who became supporters and donors.

Dr. Grenfell was an icon and has forever left his mark on the development of rural Newfoundland and Labrador. In his career he had established a number of hospitals and medical services, founded the International Grenfell Association, written 33 books, numerous articles, was knighted, inducted in the Canadian Medical Hall of Fame, Memorial University’s Western Campus is named in his honor, he has his own distinguished fabric, known as “Grenfell Cloth”, Grenfell Drive carries his name and he has forever left a special place in my heart.

Sir Doctor Wilfred Thomason Grenfell is a role model. A man who stood for something, especially for the people of rural Newfoundland and Labrador. The life changes and improvements that occurred in these regions because of him is expansive. After a visit to the interpretation centre, I asked myself, how did he manage all of these things? You could say he was well-rounded and a “jack of all traits”.

One short post can not do justice to this titan of a man, so there will be more on him and his contributions in the future. I’ll leave on the note that we are privileged to have many explorers, adventures, pioneers, missionaries, industrialists and settlers come to rural Newfoundland and Labrador and build the roots for the special place it is to all that has had the opportunity to experience it for themselves. Dr. Grenfell may be gone, but he is not forgotten and his legacy gracefully lives on. There are others who have come and gone since him and many more to follow. We all have our place and contributions to make, ensuring that Rural Newfoundland and Labrador flourishes with all the success it rightfully can achieve!

Stealing a line from Dale Carnagie, “If it’s to be, it’s up to me!” Tell yourself that three times out loud.

Together we can achieve the things we think we can not. Believe and we will prosper…

I believe.

CCM –

%d bloggers like this: