1953 Expansion of CHI St. Joseph Health Regional Hospital

Humble Beginnings Rooted in Faith

It all began in 1916 when the Sisters of St. Francis in Rochester, Minnesota sent Mother Mary Adelaide Sandusky and 23 sisters to Toledo, Ohio to establish a province to respond to the educational needs of Polish immigrants. Two short years later, the Sisters traveled to Gypsum, Ohio to care for victims of the flu pandemic sweeping the country.

As part of that ministry and after expanding to Texas, in 1936 the Sisters of St. Francis began managing and purchased the 25-bed Bryan Hospital, which had recently closed after 20 years of service due to the passing of its founding owner. The Sisters renamed the hospital St. Joseph Hospital in honor of one of the patron saints of the sick and dying.

From that time forward, the Sisters’ spirit of health and healing and unrivaled commitment to compassionate care helped build a solid foundation for what would eventually become the most trusted health system in the region: CHI St. Joseph Health.

Growing Our Healing Ministry

For the next eight decades under the Sisters’ direction, the hospital grew and flourished with one expansion after another including the construction of a new Regional Hospital at our current location off Villa Maria Road in Bryan.

An endless list of new services, advances in equipment, and medical firsts for the region has enabled CHI St. Joseph Health to become the major referral center for the nine-county area in the Brazos Valley.

Some of our medical firsts for the region have included the first CT scanner, the first open-heart surgery suite and cardiac catheterization laboratory, mammography, outpatient surgery, a dedicated sleep laboratory, cancer center, rehabilitation center and freestanding emergency room.

Over the years, in order to extend their healing ministry, the Sisters also expanded the health system’s geographic footprint with the purchase of hospitals in the rural areas of Caldwell, Madisonville, Navasota and later Bellville, as well as the creation of clinics in Normangee, Lexington and Caldwell.

In November of 2014, the Sisters of St. Francis transferred sponsorship of St. Joseph Health System to one of the largest faith-based health systems in the nation, Catholic Health Initiatives (CHI), based in Englewood, Colorado.

As CHI St. Joseph Health, our Catholic heritage and the Sisters’ legacy continues. Our partnership with Texas A&M Health Science Center to develop the MatureWell Lifestyle Center, a health and wellness center devoted to seniors and a new $23 million Emergency & Trauma Center at our Regional Hospital are just the beginning.

“Our faith-based ministry is rooted in our belief that every life is sacred. Our employees and physicians minister as a team, guided by God’s call to foster healing as we strive to transform hurt into hope.”

Sr. Penny Dunn, OSF
V.P. Mission Integration