Providence Center: For 25 Years a Place of Peace

May 1, 2019

David Chiles – Executive Director, Providence Center

Providence Center will be celebrating our 25th anniversary on May 2nd, a quarter of a century built on the vision of Sr. Nancy Hagenbach’s vision, the unrelenting fidelity of the Holy Child Sisters, and the Sisters’ partnership with the people of Fairhill. This is a time of reflection and celebration for what we have been and what we are becoming.

When I think of who we are and why we are here, I am reminded of a story from our youth program. One of our 3rd graders, Enrique, was struggling. His mother had been incarcerated and his father had abandoned the family. Enrique was experiencing many emotions that made his behavior challenging, including sadness, anger, and fear.

One day, when his grandmother came to pick him up from our program, Enrique ran to the corner and burst into tears. Our teacher knelt beside him and led him through breathing exercises to calm him, breathing in deeply through the nose and out through the mouth. We had recently been working with the children on visualization exercises to help them manage their stress, and so she asked Enrique to close his eyes and picture his place of peace.

“Miss,” Enrique responded, “this is the only place where I have any peace.”

We serve many purposes at Providence Center, offering a variety of programs in our bright and joyful building, programs delivered by a talented and compassionate staff. The core of who we are, though, is a place of peace.

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