History of Hospitals in Archdiocese Reveals Charity of the People
One of the most concrete ways the Archdiocese of Newark has sought to serve its people is through strivingto make available professional medical care.
The first Catholic hospitals in the state of New Jersey were launched in the 1860’s, when St. Mary Hospital in Hoboken (also the second hospital of any kind to be opened in New Jersey) and St. Francis Hospital in Jersey City were established under the care of the Sisters of the Poor of St. Francis in 1863 and 1864, respectively. Saint Michael Hospital in Newark was established under the Sisters of Charity in 1867.
By the 1920’s, a dozen hospitals had been established throughout the state. The work and self-sacrifice of Catholic Religious made these hospitals affordable centers for many thousands of poor of all nationalities and faiths, while growing professionalism helped develop a high level of care.
Today, 11 Catholic hospitals (including two nursing homes, one rehabilitation center, and one center for psychiatric and drug detoxification care and assistance) operate—all having served in one form or another for decades—within the Archdiocese, providing the highest quality medical care to the people of the Church of Newark.
Cathedral Healthcare System, an archdiocesan network of several of these hospitals (Saint Michael’s Medical Center, Saint James Hospital and Columbus Hospital in Newark; Pope John Paul II Pavilion at St. Mary’s Life Center and Hospital Center at Orange, both in Orange), was organized originally as Health Corporation of the Archdiocese of Newark in 1980; it became Cathedral Healthcare System in 1986. The agency endeavors in its mission to “minister to those in need of healing, according to the values of Christ as taught in the Gospel, to foster the values of love, compassion, justice and reverence for life, and to support health services which improve or maintain the quality of life.”
Mt. Carmel Guild Hospital (psychiatric and drug detoxification services), established 1973, conducted by Catholic Community Services
Saint James Hospital, established in 1900 as Saint James Roman Catholic Orphan Asylum and Hospital; the two facilities were incorporated in 1890, and opened in May 1900; renamed Saint James Hospital in 1958
Saint Michael’s Medical Center, established 1867
Columbus Hospital, established in 1934 by a small group of community leaders; became part of Cathedral Healthcare System in 1999
St. Vincent’s Nursing Home (a division of St. Joseph’s Regional Medical Center), established originally as St. Vincent’s Nursery for orphans in 1898 in Montclair by the Sisters of Charity of St. Elizabeth; became St. Vincent’s General Hospital in 1926; established as a nursing home in the mid-
1980s; relocated to Cedar Grove in 2001; conducted by the Sisters of Charity of St. Elizabeth.
Trinitas Hospital, established in 2000 after a merger between St. Elizabeth Hospital and Elizabeth General Hospital (the latter lay hospital of which had acquired in 1990 the Alexian Brothers Hospital, established in 1892 by the Congregation of Alexian Brothers); conducted by the Sisters of Charity of St. Elizabeth
St. Francis Hospital, established 1864; became a rehabilitation center at the beginning of the millennium for people coping with physical and emotional challenges as a result of injury or illness; there is also an emergency room with limited hours; conducted by Bon Secours and Canterbury Partnership for Care
Pope John Paul II Pavilion at St. Mary’s Life Center (nursing
home), established originally as St. Mary’s Hospital in 1904 in Orange as a private institution by Rev. V. Romenelli and was then taken over by the Sisters of St. Francis, Third Order Conventuals of the Mission of the Immaculate Virgin; became a nursing home in 1996
Holy Name Hospital, established 1925, conducted by the Sisters of St. Joseph of Peace
Reprinted form The Catholic Advocate, Official Commemorative Edition, October 15, 2003.