On August 7, 1898, the first cornerstone was laid for what would become Billings' first hospital, Saint Vincent. Now part of Intermountain Health, the hospital marked the occasion with a caregiver celebration to begin a yearlong celebration of its 125-year legacy and history on Monday, August 7, 2023.
"This is an incredibly special celebration of the dedication of our caregivers, those serving today and throughout our history," said Jen Alderfer, President of St. Vincent Healthcare and Montana | Wyoming Market for Intermountain Health. "The original Sisters of Charity of Leavenworth that founded our hospital have left an indelible mark on this region by providing excellent, patient-center care to all those who came through our doors. We are honored to continue their mission in service to our community, especially to the poor and vulnerable."
Sister Eileen Hurley, SCL reflected on St. Vincent’s history and future, "They continue the mission, vision and values of the Sisters of Charity of Leavenworth. When you walk into this hospital, you see it on the walls, but you most likely experience it in all the people."
Responding to a request made by Billings' first mayor, Dr. Henry Chappel, and Billings' first Catholic priest, Father Von Clarenbeck, the Sisters of Charity of Leavenworth opened St. Vincent to serve the community's needs. Founded on the mission of compassionate care, St. Vincent is a regional leader in healthcare. Continuing to respond to the needs of the community just as its founding Sisters and pioneering providers did, St. Vincent has been recognized as an innovator for advancements in trauma, heart, stroke, neurological and cancer care. This also includes caring for the region's youngest patients. St. Vincent opened the region's first Pediatric Intensive Care Unit staffed 24/7 by Pediatric Intensivists and the only Pediatric Surgery program serving eastern Montana, northern Wyoming, and the western Dakotas.
Throughout the yearlong 125-year celebration, St. Vincent will host special events to share its history and vision for the next 125 years. This includes a special celebration at the 44th annual SAINTS Benefit on October 7, honoring and supporting the emergency and critical care services that St. Vincent has provided for 125 years. Additionally, St. Vincent will host a number of events for the Billings community to learn more about its history, including educational displays, lectures, and a special closing celebration and mass on August 7, 2024.