Sr Juliana, Little Company of Mary

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Sr Juliana, Little Company of Mary

The prayerfulness and professionalism of the Sisters of the Little Company of Mary, were what led Margaret Coulson to enter the order 59 years ago.

Born in Hobart in 1934 and educated at St Joseph’s School, a young Margaret worked as a clerk after leaving school and then began nursing training at Calvary Hospital, in Lenah Valley.

It was here she came to know the Little Company of Mary Sisters.

“I really admired the Sisters, they were very prayerful, very professional and ‘normal,’” Sr Juliana said.

“The combination appealed to me immensely.”

“After much prayer and discussion… I entered the Little Company of Mary in 1956, where I took the name of Juliana.”

The charism of the order also greatly inspired Sr Juliana and still continues to so do today.

“We are an international Marian congregation, ‘To Jesus, through Mary’ where Mary stood at the foot of the cross by her dying son,” she said.

“So we are an order in the spirit of Calvary to be with the sick and the dying and also being for others.”

The Sisters of the Little Company of Mary came to Australia in 1885, and to Hobart in 1938.

With founder Mary Potter’s vision of an international order to assist the sick and dying, The Little Company of Mary has been responsible for building and ministering in hospitals throughout the world, including four Calvary hospitals in Tasmania.

The congregation also has a strong focus on professional training, with Sr Juliana gaining a tertiary qualification in health administration and in 1988 being made a Member of the Order of Australia (AM) for services to hospital administration,  as a senior administrator and Director of Calvary Hospital, Hobart.

“It was recognition of Calvary in Hobart and its history, a reflection of the all the Sisters (and staff) had done before me,” she said.

“It was an honour to receive it on their behalf.”

Now retired, Sr Juliana is still very busy with visitation, hospital archive work and travels regularly to meetings.
She is very grateful for her religious life and all she has been able to share with people.

“It can be challenging, but we always need to realise that hospitals aren’t just bricks and mortar, but above all, [made up of] people who are unique individuals entrusted to our care,” she said.

“It is our ministry to be there for others.”