An unveiling of two paintings by Marie Becker, SCN, was held in the lobby of St. Vincent Infirmary in Little Rock, Ark., today. The paintings are hanging near the fountain in the lobby.
St. Vincent commissioned the paintings two years ago to illustrate the heritage and legacy of St. Vincent. “We are very pleased to share the outcome of our request of Sister Marie in our unveiling of this very important and significant artwork at St. Vincent,” said Peter Banko, President and CEO St. Vincent Health System.
Banko and Sister Marie unveiled the oil paintings and Sister Marie explained the meanings of each. She titled the paintings “The Seeds That Were Sown” to emphasize the faith-filled beginnings of both the Sisters of Charity of Nazareth and of St. Vincent Infirmary. The separate paintings show St. Vincent de Paul, for whom St. Vincent is named, and Mother Catherine Spalding, founder of the Sisters of Charity of Nazareth.
In one painting St. Vincent de Paul is holding in his left hand a model of the house, used as the first hospital, donated by the Alexander Hagar estate and others. Other models of each hospital leading up to and including St. Vincent Infirmary, as it stands today, are included in the painting.
The second painting of Mother Spalding, dressed in the original habit and Kentucky sunbonnet, depicts the history of the Sisters of Charity of Nazareth working to meet the needs of the time. It shows Mother Spalding holding in her right hand St. Vincent de Paul Chapel, at Nazareth Ky. Other renderings of buildings include Presentation Academy, which is still open, founded by Mother Spalding in 1831 in Louisville, Ky; Nazareth Convent in Bangalore in southern India; Colonial Hall (also known as the Motherhouse) completed in 1906 and O’Connell Hall completed in 1854.
St. Vincent Health System, founded in 1888, is one of Arkansas’ leading health systems. St. Vincent Infirmary Medical Center, an acute care facility, licensed for 619 beds, located in Little Rock, serves as the hub of the health system. Other St. Vincent hospitals include St. Vincent North, licensed for 69 beds, in Sherwood; and St. Anthony’s Medical Center, licensed for 49 beds, in Morrilton. The system also includes a network of primary care clinics, home health agency and affiliations with more than 650 physicians. St. Vincent is part of Catholic Health Initiatives (CHI), a national nonprofit health organization with headquarters in Denver, Colorado. The faith-based system operates in 19 states and includes 73 hospitals; 40 long-term care, assisted- and residential-living facilities; two community health services organizations; and home health agencies. In fiscal year 2010, CHI provided nearly $590 million in charity care and community benefit, including services for the poor, free clinics, education and research.