Sunday, 04 February 2024 19:21

An extraordinary woman

claire nantelClaire's life was rich in experience and involvement in various fields. Following her death, we received several testimonials. Here are a few of them in the form of a mosaic illustrating the luminosity of her face.
The key words to bear witness to her are trust, a positive outlook, welcoming events, openness to Providence and to the action of the Holy Spirit. This is what enabled Claire to move forward and discover the Will of God in her life and in the life of the Institute.

- Today we lost you, one of the pillars of our Institute. You were a gift to all of us Italian Oblates, a beacon, an extraordinary woman, a wise and passionate President of our spirituality and charism. Your love for the Institute helped us to grow as a group and to appreciate the richness of secular consecration. You were firm, clear and competent. You were truly an only child of Father Parent. We loved you very much; we loved each other; we shared strong moments of fraternity and prayer. We Italian Oblates had the good fortune and joy of having you here in Italy for many years while you were at the service of the World Conference of Secular Institutes (WCSI).

We thank God for having met you and for having travelled a long way together. Thank you for your service to the Institute, for the translations you did for us, and for the work in the archives that you continued to do as long as you could. Farewell, Claire, we miss you. God, pray for us all.
Italian Oblates

- Claire was brave and courageous. Whatever she undertook, she did it well and to the end. She knew how to pass on her experience and knowledge to others, and was happy to do so. Reading, news and recent discoveries were all important parts of her life. Despite her sometimes-serious air, she loved to laugh and be teased. She was a pleasant companion at work, knowing how to exchange ideas and share opinions despite differences of opinion.

- Claire has fulfilled a number of responsibilities at various levels within the Institute. She has always taken a positive, confident view of the changes and modifications regularly made to the way the Institute operates, at various levels: leadership, administration, bringing members together, giving direction.

Over the years, many of us have benefited from her great organizational skills, her team spirit, her precise communications and frank relationships, her professional skills and her infectious, sincere laugh. Thank you, Claire! Your name expresses your qualities, your mission, your talents, your thousand and one services in a total gift! Continue to shine in the presence of infinite Love.

- Drawing on her experience as a secretary to a judge during her term as President of the Institute, Claire updated the Institute’s legal status and worked on the creation of new corporations. She would serve as President for more than 14 years, until October 2023. She regularly travelled the 200 kilometers from Waterloo to Trois-Rivières, braving the illnesses from which she suffered. The archives also benefited from her expertise. She knew the history of the Institute and was gifted with a faithful memory. Each of her visits to the Head Office was punctuated by anecdotes told with humor and accompanied by a creamy sucre à la crème of which she kept the secret. She was a joy to be around!
Oblates of the Sécommi Fund

- She was a woman of openness, of dialogue and discernment, refined and sympathetic; a presence that reflected wisdom, unconditional welcome, gentleness and strength at the same time.

The Lord gave Claire many human and spiritual gifts and charisms. It is for these reasons that I praise and thank the Lord Jesus, who opened the doors to the Love and Glory of Paradise for her.
Italian Oblates

- From Mauritius, Ellena writes: "When you were elected President, you asked me to be your Secretary General. You had great confidence in me. You always gave good advice and were very frank and lucid about your illness. You are a great Lady, a great Visionary, and you know it... Thank you for all you have done, not only for me, but also for other Oblates, both young and more experienced. Be at peace and don't forget us.

In conclusion, we can say that Claire has made a major contribution to the influence and good health of the Institute. Thank you for your fine work as guardian of the lighthouse that is the Institute, because you have guided us and shown us the way, without imposing.

On June 4, 2005, Claire's birthday, Father Parent wrote: “Your parents and friends thank God and the Blessed Virgin for the life you lead, for the good you sow, for the love you spread around you. In my eyes, you are a gift from God, an inspiration to the Institute, a jewel of the Virgin Mary, an achievement for heaven. May the Virgin continue to hold you by the hand.”

Dear Claire, enter now into joy, into the fullness of life with the Lord, with all the saints, Father Parent and the companions who have gone before you.

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