Sister Suzanne LeBoisselier, MSC
Sister Suzanne Le Boisselier, MSC
1921 - 2015
Sister Suzanne was born on September 4, 1921 in Le Havre, France. For many years she lived alone with her mother who was a war widow. As a young woman she began her vocational training as a future teacher and continued to live with her mother in Le Havre.
Later her mother retired and became a resident of Notre Dame de Gazonfier retirement home which was across the street from the Solitude. There are sisters who still recall Madame LeBoisselier as a soul who loved peace. Her kindness and her sensitivity made it enjoyable to be around her. During school holidays, Madame LeBoisselier would come with Suzanne to the community at Beaumont where she loved to be around the sisters. Together they would tour the surrounding countryside.
When in 1949 Suzanne was hired by the diocese of Le Mans as a teacher. She taught class in the boarding school, St. Theresa, in Beaumont, where she was also responsible for supervising the students who were boarders. She resided in the convent with the sisters. Suzanne’s health was fragile, but thanks to the pleasant atmosphere created by Sister Mary of St. Hubert and the other sisters, her health improved greatly. It was here that she began to envision a future with the Marianites.
On September 8, 1952, Suzanne entered the novitiate of the Sisters Marianites at the Solitude of the Savior in Le Mans. She made her postulate there and on the day of her clothing, she received the name Sister Marie Placide. After her novitiate, she pronounced her first vows on August 28, 1954 and resumed her teaching career at the boarding school, Saint Theresa’s in Beaumont.
From 1956 to 1959, Sister taught class at St. Martha’s School in Le Mans.
The 1959-1960 school year brought her to the boarding school at St. John, in Château-du-Loir. In September 1960 she returned to Beaumont where she was responsible for a class until 1982. Since she had a class of children with learning difficulties, her attention and her mission were to enable them to enter the normal circuit of their secularity. To give these students a taste of success and appreciation of beauty, Sister also taught them the skills of knitting, macramé, crafts and other project.
Health problems forced Suzanne to leave teaching and she went to live in the community of Château-du-Loir where she remained in contact with youth. She assured supervision of the students and also taught catechism for the parish. She loved children and said that her contacts with them helped to deepen her own faith because of the study and research she had to do in order to answer their many questions. Sister was also responsible for drafting the annals of the local community.
In addition to all this, Suzanne regularly met with a group of people who made blankets for Catholic Charities. She remained at Chateau until 1989, with one year spent at Marolles-les-Brault where the Marianites were attempting a new mission.
In 1995, she had the joy of going to Canada for the 150th anniversary of Brother André. “There,” she said, "my vocation in Holy Cross was profoundly deepened, thanks to meetings with the Brothers, Fathers and Holy Cross Sisters.” She kept a great devotion to Brother André and entrusted to him several seriously ill friends and acquaintances.
In July 2005, Suzanne came to live at Notre Dame de la Solitude where she would retire in rest and prayer. She spent much time in her room in silence to pray the rosary. The Blessed Virgin remained most special to her. Sister was happy at the Solitude, and the lay staff appreciated her kindness and her beautiful smile.
For the Sisters, Suzanne was a witness in her way of praying, her availability and her fidelity to community prayer and meetings.
Her physical weakness increased and on Thursday, March 19, Sister was admitted to the Health Center South Pole. After a few days of observation and care, her condition worsened; she remained very peaceful until the end.
Sister Suzanne died March 23, 2015 at the age of 93 years and in the 62nd year of her religious life. Sister Marie-Jo Gruau was near her with the nursing staff of the clinic. The following day her body was returned to La Solitude. The Sisters provided continued prayer in the oratory for her intentions. The funeral took place in the chapel of La Solitude Wednesday, March 25, 2015. Sister Suzanne’s body is buried in the Congregation’s cemetery of Holy Cross at Le Mans.
May the Lord welcome her in his peace and His Joy.