Special Collections

Sr. Ignatia Gavin, CSA
CSA’s Connection to Alcoholics Anonymous

“For more than 40 years, Sister M. Ignatia Gavin, CSA was a messenger of hope for alcoholics and their families. Her courageous stand for medical treatment and her caring devotion to the victims of alcoholism helped Dr. Bob Smith and Bill Wilson, founders of Alcoholics Anonymous, and thousands who have come after them.” –Angel of Hope

Photographs, videos, awards, personal memorabilia, books pertaining to Sr. Ignatia and AA, and newspaper clippings are included in this collection.


Please enjoy this online gallery pertaining to Sr. Ignatia.  You may also view photographs of Sr. Ignatia’s birthplace, discovered by an AA member in Ireland after much research.  Additional photographs may be viewed by visiting the CSA Archives.

25th Anniversary of AA:

The following video is a recording of a speech given by Sr. Ignatia at the 25th Anniversary of Alcoholics Anonymous, held in Long Beach California, in 1960.

Additional Information:

For more information about Sr. Ignatia, a historic DVD documentary is available for purchase:

Angel of Hope: The Life and Legacy of Sister M. Ignatia, CSA
tells the inspiring story of the tiny woman witha huge heart – and the soul of a saint.  All profits aid the Sisters of Charity of St. Augustine in their continuing work with alcoholics.  To receive your copy, send $20.00 ($15.00 plus $5.00 shipping & handling) for each DVD.

Make checks payable to:
Sisters of Charity of St. Augustine
5232 Broadview Road
Richfield OH 44286

Sr. Henrietta Gorris, CSA
Reclaiming a Neighborhood from Poverty

Sr. Henrietta Gorris was best known for her work in the Hough area in Cleveland, following the riots in 1966.  In these turbulent times, Sr. Henrietta helped the poor and impoverished revitalize their neighborhood.

Sr. Henrietta served as the administrator of Mercy Hospital and Timken-Mercy Hospital beginning in 1951.  She was later transferred to Cleveland in 1962, becoming the director of nursing services at Charity Hospital.  Through her work at Charity, Sr. Henrietta was given the opportunity to volunteer in the poverty-stricken Hough community.

Through the help of Albert Koklowsky, pastor of Our Lady of Fatima, Sr. Henrietta opened a mission center at his parish.  She recruited neighborhood and suburban volunteers, and created the Caridad (Charity and Responsibility in Deed and Duty) and Famicos (Family Cooperators).  Caridad was focused on meeting the needs of education, health care, and nutrition, and Famicos became a housing rehabilitation program for low income families.  Sr. Henrietta also wrote a weekly column in the Catholic Universe Bulletin, in which she inspired her readers to take action against poverty.

Awards and recognitions, photographs, videos, tapes and CD’s, personal memorabilia, newspaper clippings, correspondence, and other materials are included in this collection.


Please enjoy this online gallery pertaining to Sr. Henrietta.  Additional photographs may be viewed by visiting the CSA Archives.