When the Sisters of Mercy came to Cedar Rapids, they had nothing but a spirit of dedication that in 1900 led them to open Mercy Hospital – known today as Mercy Medical Center.
The two-story residency located at Third Avenue and Sixth Street consisted of four private rooms, a surgery room and beds for the three Sisters who were the hospital staff. The first patient was hospitalized for 16 days after a cataract operation; her total bill was $17.40.
The Mercy Auxiliary was founded on February 21, 1923. The group quickly grew from 13 members to more than 500 by July of that year. The purpose of the initial group was "to assist Mercy Hospital in any charitable work that may arise," which is not too different from the Auxiliary's general goal today, "to promote and advance the welfare of Mercy Medical Center," although, the means of achieving the goal have changed.
Mercy Auxiliary Mission Statement
The Mercy Auxiliary is an integral part of Mercy Medical Center. Its purpose is to promote and advance Mercy's welfare. The Auxiliary serves as a liaison between Mercy and the community, and supports Mercy's patient and community-related services. In addition to providing many volunteer hours every year, the Auxiliary also serves as a fundraising organization.