MARYLHURST - More than 1,200 people joined the Holy Names Sisters Sept. 7-9 to celebrate the grand opening of Mary's Woods at Marylhurst, a continuing-care retirement community on the sisters' land here.

The 28-acre project was created and built by the sisters to enrich the lives of those around them and to help secure their own future and their ability to continue their work in the community at large.

Through prayer, blessings and music, the event recognized the groups and individuals involved in planning and construction of Mary's Woods and the donors who contributed to the project.

'Each of you here is a part of our story,' said Sister Lynda Thompson, Holy Names Provincial Administrator. 'Tonight we toast the dreamers and doers who believed in this story and its meaning.'

A Sunday morning Mass of Thanksgiving, held in the historic Provincial House Chapel, was followed by a ceremony acknowledging and blessing the donors of Mary's Woods' gardens and landscaping features. Buffets on Friday and Saturday and a Sunday morning brunch were prepared and served by the facility's dining staff.

Guests were entertained by a choir of Holy Names Sisters, Mary's Woods residents and others, who presented a musical tribute to the sisters' history in the Northwest, titled 'Tapestry of Song.' At an evening concert, pianist and Northwest recording artist Michael Allen Harrison performed.

Resident Louise Smith, who moved to Mary's Woods from Burlingame, Calif., said, 'This weekend has been so lavish, so wonderful in detail, I am so happy I made the decision to move here.'

Mary's Woods, which opened to residents in January, offers independent living supported by a full range of health-care services and amenities. The community contains 266 apartment homes and villas and the Marie-Rose Health Center with 50 assisted-living apartments, a 22-bed special care and dementia unit and a 23-bed skilled nursing clinic. The Marie-Rose Center provides 24-hour skilled nursing care.

The core of the project is the sisters' renovated 1911 Provincial House, which joins three new apartment buildings and the Marie-Rose Center through interior corridors. For more information about Mary's Woods, contact the marketing staff at (503) 635-7381.