About Us

History

Bold faith, foresight and flexibility characterize the spirit of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Orange. These characteristics were evident in Le Puy, France, in 1650, when the sisters first came together to address some badly overlooked needs in that city. These same virtues were operative when the Sisters came to Eureka in 1912, with a shoestring budget and a strong sense of purpose.

Their history records the remarkable adventures of women who began pioneering ministries in the early physical frontiers of California, women who continue to pioneer ministries in the social frontiers of modern society. They have an ability to look ahead, a willingness to adapt to changing needs, and a faith that operates when human powers fail.

Whatever work they might be about, the Sisters keep one thing in mind: their mission is to heal brokenness - the alienation we sometimes feel from God: and the divisions, hurts, and barriers that we create with each other.

This mission of reconciliation is the unique way the Sisters of St. Joseph of Orange have of helping to bring about the kingdom of God right here and now.

The vision is personalized by each sister's presence in her work and is made concrete through several theological beliefs and their corresponding values:

  • Persons are created by a loving God and are therefore inherently good and worthy of respect
  • Like God, persons are relational and therefore need the support of others in the community
  • Jesus gave new meaning to suffering and death, a meaning that transforms our own experience of those same realities
  • We have been redeemed but are still sinful and limited, and therefore need forgiveness from one another
  • Jesus was a healer of persons who attended to spirit as well as body; therefore we minister to the needs of the whole person
  • Scripture records God's special compassion for the poor, weak and vulnerable, therefore we are called to this same compassion.

The Sisters of St. Joseph of Orange

The Sisters of St. Joseph of Orange are a community of Catholic women who share a common foundation and mission with 51 other St. Joseph congregations in 36 countries around the world. Each of these congregations expresses the same mission "to bring all people to union with God and with one another, serving their spiritual and corporal needs in all the works of mercy within the power of the congregation."

In 1836, the American foundation began when eight sisters were sent to Carondolet, near St. Louis, Missouri. During the many years the Sisters of St. Joseph have served in America, they have moved to various parts of the country, established new, independent communities, and have brought the Gospel to the people and cultures they have served.

The Sisters of St. Joseph of Orange were founded in 1912. They carry with them more than 360 years of tradition of charity and humility, faith, foresight, and flexibility in attending to the diverse needs of the people they serve. The Sisters of St. Joseph were founded in Le Puy, France, in 1650. Today, the congregation carries out its mission through education, social work, pastoral ministry, and health services.

The fundamental principles that underlie the call to the Sisters of St. Joseph of Orange have not changed since 1650: They establish right relationships that recognize the sacredness of persons; the development of communities of wholeness and health; taking responsibility for social justice; and working together with others for the common good."

St. Joseph Health - Sonoma County

On New Year's Day 1950, Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital opened its doors. Sixty years later, Santa Rosa's premier hospital has expanded into a full-service, not-for-profit system of inpatient, outpatient, and community outreach services for the residents of Sonoma County and California's North Coast communities.

As ministry of the Sister of St. Joseph of Orange, we are committed to the holistic care of persons - body, mind and spirit. The mission of the St. Joseph Health, of which we are a part, is to extend the healing ministry of Jesus in the tradition of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Orange by continually improving the health and quality of life of people in the communities we serve. Like the early Sisters who came out of their cloistered convent to care for the vulnerable and disadvantaged in the street of Le Puy, France, our mission compels us to reach out beyond the walls of our hospitals to care for persons where there is a need.

Our expanding continuum of care today includes: urgent and emergent care, trauma services, inpatient and outpatient surgery, critical care, cardiology, oncology, gastroenterology, endocrinology, neurology, orthopedics, pediatrics, family-centered maternity care, newborn intensive care, transitional care, palliative care, home care, hospice, rehabilitation, work care, acute psychiatric services, mobile and dental clinics, health and wellness education, neighborhood organization, advocacy, and youth mentoring.

Physicians throughout our extensive service area refer patients to SJHS-SC facilities for open heart surgery, neurosurgery, clinical cancer research, psychiatric care, rehabilitation, and much more. Sophisticated diagnostic procedures available from SJHS-SC facilities include angiocardiography, cardiac catheterization, coronary angioplasty, cardiac electrophysiology, CT scanning, magnetic resonance imaging, color-flow Doppler echocardiography, laser lithotripsy, transesophogeal ultrasound, video endoscopy, and more.

With two leading hospitals and numerous campuses, we account for one-half of Sonoma County's available hospital beds. More than 2,000 dedicated employees serve the community through our integrated network of inpatient, outpatient, and outreach modalities.

The history of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Orange in Sonoma County has been one of community support. In return, the community has benefited from a wide array of medical "firsts." Our history, commitment, and vision is to continue to provide our community with the best in health care consistent with our values of Dignity, Service, Excellence, and Justice.

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