On October 23, 2016, a panel discussion on the life of humanitarian Lotta Hitschmanova was organized by Rev. John Marsh of the Canadian Unitarian and Universalist Historical Society and was filmed by
at their office at USC Canada in Ottawa. 56 Sparks Street
Panelists included former USC Canada Board chair Clyde Sanger, also Lotta’s biographer; David Rain, former USC Canada employee, now editor of this Lotta56sparks.ca blog; Joy Thierry Llewellyn, author of
and Kate Green, USC Canada’s program manager for Asia. “, “Lotta Hitschmanova: Canada’s ‘Mother Teresa’ with Attitude
56 Sparks St, Boston, Bruce Cockburn, Clyde Sanger, David B Smith, David Rain, Elsie MacGill, Emily Carr, Emily Stamp, France, Humour, India, International development, Joan Baxter, John and Helen Backhouse, Joy Thierry Llewellyn, Kate Green, Korea, Lisbon, Lotta on a banknote, Lotta stories & reminiscences, Lotta's uniform, Lotta's volunteers & supporters, Marseilles, Nova Scotia, Ottawa, Portugal, Refugees & Immigrants, TV, radio. videos, Unitarian connections, Unitarian Service Committee, USC Canada, Vernon Burrows, Winnipeg, Women leaders, WW II |
Lotta in Ottawa, 1943.
Lotta Hitschmanova is revered by many as a kind of “saint”, but she was as human as the rest of us, had a great sense of humour, and apparently in her early days, loved to party!
Here is a Lotta story shared by Heather Haas Barclay of London, Ontario, as she recalls the remarkable personal connection her parents had with Lotta.
Czechoslovakia, Humour, London, Lotta stories & reminiscences, Ontario, Ottawa, Portage la Prairie, Prague, Quebec, Unitarian connections, USC Canada |
How did a World War II refugee, born into a Jewish family in Prague, Czechoslovakia, become a revered figure for
? Unitarians, a small liberal religious faith in Canada
The following is a brief response to this question, taken from Clyde Sanger’s 1986 biography, “Lotta and the USC Story.”
Bermuda, Boston, British Columbia, Casablanca, Clyde Sanger, Czechoslovakia, France, Hamilton, Jewish roots, Lisbon, Manitoba, Marseilles, Montreal, Morocco, New York, Ontario, Ottawa, Portugal, Prague, Quebec, Refugees & Immigrants, Toronto, Unitarian connections, Unitarian Service Committee, United States, Vancouver, Winnipeg, WW II |
Lotta and her iconic uniform were inseparable. She wore it everywhere. It became part of her public persona.
And it inevitably led to some misunderstandings and amusing stories that she herself would enjoy relating.
Here is what her biographer, Clyde Sanger, has written on page 150 of his book,
“Lotta and the Unitarian Service Committee Story.”
“Dr Lotta’s sense of humour made her collect stories of misunderstandings about her uniform: