New Database Spreads the Wisdom of Louise de Marillac

What did Louise say? The Vincentian Studies Institute of DePaul University has launched a searchable, interactive Internet database that provides worldwide access to the wisdom of St. Louise de Marillac. It serves as a companion to “What did Vincent Say?,” a popular database launched in January 2012 offering quotes from Vincent de Paul.

Scott Kelley, assistant vice president for Vincentian Scholarship in the Office of Mission and Values at DePaul University in Chicago, directed the project. “While there are thousands of pages of primary source material available online through the Vincentian Heritage Collections, many people often ask to source a quote they came across from Vincent or Louise. The Louise de Marillac site is intended to showcase the profound wisdom of a woman who is a co-founder of the Vincentian family.”

There are almost 400 quotes in the database.  Users simply search by word or phrase to locate a specific quote or to identify a quote on a particular topic. All quotes were taken from the “Spiritual Writings of Louise de Marillac” edited and translated from the original French edition “Sainte Louise de Marillac: Écrits Spirituels” by Sister Louise Sullivan, D.C., and published in 1991. Users can recommend their favorite quotes for consideration if they are not yet included.

Kelley says, “We thought a searchable, interactive database of quotes would help spread popular insights to a broad audience of students, faculty, staff, scholars, and anyone interested in Vincent de Paul and Louise de Marillac. We wanted the sites to be very user friendly and accessible.”

To that end, both sites now have social media links in the right-hand navigation to enable easy sharing with friends and “likes” on Facebook.

“What did Vincent Say?” has proven quite popular, attracting more than 1,000 visits and 8,000 pageviews in the past three months.  Kelley expects “What did Louise Say?” to become highly trafficked as well. “Anecdotal feedback suggests it is a very useful tool for searching popular quotes,” he said.

So what’s next? It will be a database for Elizabeth Ann Seton to be released sometime in 2013.

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