In celebration of St. Patrick’s Day this year, FaithSearch is highlighting one of its past clients, CHRISTUS Ochsner St. Patrick Hospital, located in Lake Charles, LA.
Saint Patrick was born in Britain (or Scotland; accounts vary) around 400 A.D. to wealthy Christian parents. When he was 16 he was kidnapped by a group of Irish raiders who attacked his father’s estate. Patrick was taken to Ireland, a land of paganism and druidism at the time, to work as a shepherd slave for six years. During this time he became fluid in Gaelic and turned to religion for solace, becoming a devout Christian.
Patrick’s writings say that after six years, he heard a voice telling him to escape. He traveled south for 200 miles until he reached the coast and boarded a ship to Britain. He studied under St. Germain, bishop of Auxerre in France, to help combat paganism. He became an ordained priest and was given the Latin name “Patercius” or “Patritius”, meaning father of his people. Saint Patrick traveled back to Ireland to teach Christianity to the Irish. Saint Patrick died on March 17, 460 A.D.
In the early 1900’s, John Greene Martin, M.D., the president of the local medical society and Rev. Hubert Cramers, rector of Immaculate Conception Church, saw the need for a quality medical facility in Lake Charles. As the first hospital in the area, they reached out to the Sisters of Charity of the Incarnate Word for help in setting up the hospital like the one the sisters had established in Galveston, TX.
Dr. Martin and Rev. Cramers were quick and successful in building the hospital and insisted that it be named after St. Patrick, because Dr. Martin was a native of Ireland. In 1908, the hospital started with 50 beds, was dedicated on St. Patrick’s day, and was named St. Patrick Sanitarium.
This year CHRISTUS Ochsner St. Patrick Hospital celebrates St. Patrick’s Day weekend with two events. The Second Annual Green Hat Charity Fun Run on Saturday, March 16th and The Shamrocks & Champagne Brunch on Sunday, March 17th. The Green Hat Charity Fun Run draws participants in with food, fun & the chance to make a difference in someone’s life. Participants are typically decked out in green hats and other Irish attire. Both events will benefit the hospital’s Outpatient Physical Rehabilitation Program. “We are looking forward to this year’s race, as well as the Shamrocks and Champagne Brunch on St. Patrick’s Day at Gray Plantation, because these occasions allow us the opportunity to serve this community by fulfilling our mission of extending the healing ministry of Jesus Christ” says Kay Barnett, CFRE, CHRISTUS Ochsner Southwestern Louisiana Foundation Executive Director.
In 2017 CHRISTUS Health and Ochsner Health System created a joint venture to operate the hospital. CHRISTUS Health, an international Catholic, faith-based, not-for-profit health system, is headquartered in the Dallas area and is comprised of almost 600 facilities. Ochsner Health System is Louisiana’s largest non-profit, academic, healthcare system. Driven by a mission to Serve, Heal, Lead, Educate and Innovate, coordinated clinical and hospital patient care is provided across the region by Ochsner’s 29 owned, managed and affiliated hospitals and more than 80 health centers and urgent care centers.