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Our Catholic Identity
In the mid-1930s as the country was recovering from the Depression, James and Flora Younginer, a couple from Columbia SC. took a trip to California. While there, Flora became very ill and was nursed back to health in a Catholic Hospital named Providence.
When James and Flora came back to Columbia, they went to the Catholic Priest at St. Peter’s Catholic Church and requested that a Catholic hospital be built in Columbia so the folks in the community could have access to the same compassionate quality care that they had experienced in California.
The Priest at St. Peter’s and the Bishop of the Diocese both approved of this idea. While James and his colleagues set about raising funds for the hospital, the Bishop set about finding a Religious Community of Women to manage the hospital. After receiving a ‘NO’ from several different Religious Communities, the Bishop finally found the Sisters of Charity of St. Augustine in Cleveland, Ohio. Not only did he ask them to come to Columbia to manage the hospital, but he also informed them that James and his colleagues were only able to raise enough funds to buy the land. Consequently, if they said ‘YES’ the Sisters were going to have to actually build the hospital. These courageous Sisters decided to say ‘YES’, and took out a mortgage on their Mother House to raise the funds to build the hospital. Providence Hospital, Founded, owned and operated by the Sisters of Charity of St. Augustine, and the only Catholic hospital in the community, opened its doors in 1938.
On February 2, 2016, Providence became part of the LifePoint Health network, and shortly thereafter, changed its name to Providence Health to better represent the full complement of its services. Today as a market of LifePoint Health, Providence Health has two free-standing full-service hospitals, a free-standing emergency department in Fairfield County and numerous satellite physician practices.
While ownership of the entity has changed, maintaining a true devotion to Extending Christ’s Healing Ministry, Advancing Clinical Expertise and providing unmatched Compassion are still central to the mission of Providence Health.
Making Communities Healthier by Extending Christ’s Healing Ministry, is the very foundation on which Providence Health exists…. of why we are here. It is the foundational element that provides us with a common purpose that drives the decisions we make and the actions we take.
Respect, Compassion, Collaboration, Courage, and Justice inform us of how we ought to be as we implement decisions, engage in relationships and treat others in our midst.
As a Catholic Hospital system, Providence Health draws especially from the traditions and practices of Catholic Christian spirituality in fostering a healthy, life-giving atmosphere for everyone who works here or seeks healing within the walls of our hospitals. It is precisely because we are Catholic, that we welcome and respect the diversity of spiritual and religious practices and beliefs that our staff, our patients and families, physicians, volunteers, etc. embrace that help them live their lives fully engaged.
Click on the links below to learn more about the Principles and Ethical Directives that guide us.
The Pastoral Care Department at Providence Health is a team of trained professional Chaplains that provide interfaith pastoral or spiritual care to patients and their families. Click the link above to learn more about the help our Pastoral Care team can provide.