Sister Anita Smith, Maryknoll Sister for almost 70 Years Dies

Maryknoll, NY: Sister Anita M. Smith died on September 4, 2017 at Middlesex Hospital in Middletown, Connecticut. She was 92 years old and a Maryknoll Sister for almost 70 years.

Anita was born in Hartford, Connecticut on May 28, 1925 to Anna (Relihan) Smith and John J. Smith. She had one brother, also John J. and five sisters: Frances, Jean, Rosemary, all of whom have predeceased her, and her remaining sisters, Mary and Kathryn.

In 1943, Anita graduated from Vincentian Institute, in Albany, New York. She then attended St. Joseph’s College in West Hartford, Connecticut from 1943 –1947, where she earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Business/Economics. Then she entered the Maryknoll Sisters Congregation in Maryknoll, New York from St. Augustine Parish in Hartford, Connecticut.

She made her First Profession of Vows on March 7, 1950 at the Maryknoll Sisters Center in Maryknoll, New York. That same year, she was assigned to Waialua, Hawaii where she taught 5th and 6th grade. While on mission in Hawaii, she made her Final Profession of Vows on March 7, 1953.

In 1959, Sister Anita was assigned to Punahou, Hawaii to teach 8th grade in the Maryknoll Grade School. She returned to the Connecticut in 1971 to study at Fairfield University in Fairfield, Connecticut and earned a Masters degree in Education Administration. She then returned to Honolulu, Hawaii after graduation to serve as Principal of Maryknoll Grade School until 1980. In 1981, Sister Anita returned to West Hartford, Connecticut to study at St. Joseph College, where she earned a second Masters degree in Pastoral Ministry.

From 1982 –1983, she did field work in a poor sections of Hartford, Connecticut and in New York City; she also taught Confirmation classes in her local parish. In 1984, Sister Anita returned to Hawaii to do Pastoral work in Kona at the Immaculate Conception Parish. In 1990, she returned to the Maryknoll Sisters Center where she worked in the Congregation’s Office of Congregational and Lay Personnel Employees until 1993. From 1993 – 1997, she joined a community of semi-retired Maryknoll Sisters in Waterbury, Connecticut where they did volunteer work. In 1998, she transferred to the Congregation’s Eastern U.S Region and moved to Marlborough, Connecticut to serve in Family Ministry until 2006 and Family Childcare in Wethersfield, Connecticut until December, 2007. She then worked as school librarian at Covenant Preparatory Academy in Hartford, Connecticut from 2008-2014. 

A Vespers service will be held for Sister Anita on Thursday, September 7, 2017 at 4:15 p.m. in the Chapel of the Annunciation at the Maryknoll Sisters Center. 

A Mass of the Resurrection will be held on Friday, September 8, 2017 at 11:00 a.m. also in the Main Chapel at the Maryknoll Sisters Center followed by interment at the Sisters cemetery.