I would like to congratulate and thank the University of Limerick on the development of this virtual archive which pays tribute to the Grey Nuns, those great humanitarians who played such an important role in looking after the many Irish people who had to leave our shores during the Gorta Mor – the Great Irish Famine.
During that bleak and terrible period of our history, an estimated one hundred thousand Irish people fled to Canada. It is impossible to imagine the pain, fear, despair and suffering of these emigrants, many of whom lost beloved family members on their journey. As a country we owe an enormous debt of gratitude to the Grey nuns, who cared for so many Irish widows and orphans who were left destitute, impoverished and alone in a strange country.
This virtual archive is a very important project, which allows us to finally acknowledge the generosity and enormous humanity of those wonderful sisters whose great kindness and compassion, during one of the worst tragedies in our Country’s history, must never be forgotten.