Sr. Germaine Irene Lambert was born June 11,1910 in St. Malo, Manitoba, Canada one of eleven children born to devote parents, Amedee and Clara Lambert.
Germaine entered the novitiate at Quebec, Canada June 6, 1929 at the young age of 19. Later, she was one of the first novices in the newly constructed novitiate in
North Providence, RI in 1929. There was a large farm on the grounds, various animals, the construction of a Grotto in the likeness of the one in Lourdes, the planting of trees and other landscaping—all aspects of which pleased Germaine. The former superior general, Mother Ste. Michael was present for the opening of the new novitiate and welcomed the new members—Germaine and others.
After pronouncing her final vows,Dec.15, 1934, Germaine’s ministry was that of a commissioner, for several years. As a commissioner, she served as one of the several Sisters who traveled all over the United States, selling the handwork made in the workrooms overseas.
After studying to become an LPN, Germaine was sent to St. Francis Hospital in Roslyn, NY. At this time the hospital was known as a Sanatarium for the care of children with rheumatic fever. In later years this hospital became a well-known heart center. She served as the assistant to the superior as well as working in the hospital dietary services.
Germaine obtained a certificate for the care of physically challenged children. In 1960 she was missioned to St. Francis Home in Woonsocket, RI to care for the orphaned children there.
In 1970 St. Michael’s community in Arizona became Germaine’s new mission where she taught religious education and did home visits to the Navajo people. Germaine served there with her own sister, Alma Lambert, also a Franciscan Missionary of Mary, until 1988. This mission was especially dear to the heart of Germaine who loved children and spoke to them about God with great tenderness. Even in her last days, with the challenge of dementia, Germaine always spoke of “les petits enfants” still wondering how she could help them, whether they were on the Navajo Reservation or in Mount St. Francis, her earlier mission.
After Arizona, Germaine was sent in mission to Holy Family community at Fruit Hill, North Providence, where she cared for the sick in the FMM Nursing Center and was a Eucharistic Minister until 2003.
She was then sent in mission to St. Antoine Residence in North Smithfield, where until her death she manifested sweetness and goodness wherever she went. Much loved by the staff and other residents, who teasingly referred to her as “happy feet” (because of the quick pace and energy with which she walked in her wheelchair) she visited people, speaking to them and consoling those who were sad or in pain. One of the CNA’s would sometimes take her to the unit on the opposite side of the building simply because, he said, the staff wanted her present with them in that unit. The residents welcomed her as well.
Germaine died very peacefully on April 14, 2014. Her 104th birthday would have been in June. Along with her family, we feel sure that she will celebrate it happily with God in her special place in heaven.