A friend of mine told me about her experience with a gentleman by the name of Jean Vanier who unfortunately just passed away at the age of 90.  I was so touched by her description of how this man treated each individual with the utmost of respect and especially those who the world may not see much value in.  He showed each person the depth of God’s love for every one of his children.

You see, her son is autistic and life has been very challenging and tested every aspect of her being.  During a particularly bad period about 15 years ago her son spent a few weeks at L’Arche’, a loving community for people with intellectual learning disabilities.  Jean Vanier was the son of former Governor General P. Vanier and was a naval officer and a professor.  A visit to a psychiatric hospital prompted him to found L’Arche in 1964 as an alternative living environment where those with developmental disabilities could be full-fledged participants in the community instead of patients.

As this in Mental Health Week, watch this interview back in the ’60s with CBC News, it really is beautiful.  “You will discover that while these people are deficient mentally, they are not at all deficient with their hearts or spiritually.  They have a deep affection, extremely loyal and kind, they love animals and nature and they can teach us the primacy of love.”  They are the essence of the pure human relationship and the communication of real feeling between 2 people without the pseudo sophistication. We could learn a lot from these individuals!  Jean Vanier was known as the ‘Canadian Champion of the Developmentally Disabled’ and ‘Savior of the People on the Margins’.


Colleen Saunders is a 20 year veteran in the mortgage industry, serving Oakville, Mississauga, Burlington and Toronto and offering all mortgage related services such as 2nd mortgages, private mortgages and more.

To contact Colleen, please fill out the form on  www.mortgagesbycolleen.ca  or call 416-459-2406