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St. Joseph’s Health Kicks off 150th Anniversary Celebration

Syracuse, NY (January 23, 2019) – St. Joseph’s Health began a year-long celebration of its 150th anniversary on Wednesday with a mass honoring Saint Marianne Cope’s birthday. Born in 1838, Mother Marianne, driven by her passion and commitment to the poor and the ailing, would become a leader in health care innovation.

“As one of the founding leaders of what was then St. Joseph’s Hospital, her life and leadership helped establish the legacy of caring that has worked to improve the health of our community since 1869–the legacy that we celebrate today,” said Leslie Paul Luke, president and CEO of St. Joseph’s Health.

Recognizing the need for basic health care in a city of immigrants, a small group of the Sisters of St. Francis, including Mother Marianne Cope, defied convention by purchasing a saloon and transforming it into a hospital to serve the needs of a diverse community. Here they welcomed everyone and provided the same quality of care regardless of race, ethnicity, religion, or economic means. They pioneered rules of patient’s rights and cleanliness practices not seen before in the United States.

“Their Franciscan values of reverence, justice and compassion continue to drive the legacy of St. Joseph’s Health and serve as our guiding values as they have for 150 years,” said Luke.

The 15-bed facility that was established 150 years ago has evolved into a nationally-recognized and award-winning health care system that, in addition to the hospital, includes a College of Nursing, psychiatric emergency program and physician's office building – as well as many community-based locations, specialty services, and affiliated hospitals.

“I am confident that if she were here today, Saint Marianne would be pleased that her vision continues to be fulfilled,” said Luke.

St. Joseph’s Health thanks Bishop Robert Cunningham, the 10th bishop of the Diocese of Syracuse, for presiding over today’s mass.

About St. Joseph’s Health

St. Joseph’s Health is a regional non-profit health care system based in Syracuse, NY. St. Joseph’s has been an innovative leader in health care since our founding in 1869 as the first hospital open to the public in the city of Syracuse. Offering primary, specialty and home care, a Magnet-recognized hospital, and collaboration with community partners, St. Joseph's Health advances the well-being of the communities we serve through an expanding range of services to ensure our patients achieve optimum long-term health. St. Joseph’s is ranked by Consumer Reports among the top 15 heart surgery centers in the country, a designated Stroke Center and a U.S. News “Best Regional Hospital.” St. Joseph’s Health is affiliated with Franciscan Companies and St. Joseph’s Physicians, and is a member of Trinity Health. St. Joseph’s Health is celebrating our 150th Anniversary throughout 2019. For more information on our founding Sisters of St. Francis including Saint Marianne Cope, our legacy and our innovations, visit www.sjhsyr.org/legacy.