Maryknoll, NY: Sister Mary Patricia Norton a nurse, teacher, and social worker died on December 1st, 2022 at the Maryknoll Sisters Center, Maryknoll, NY. She was 94 years old and had been a Maryknoll Sister for 76 years.
Patricia was born in Milwaukee, WI on January 4th, 1928 to Harry Norton and Marion (Ducey) Norton. She had three brothers: Robert, Michael, and Terence. Her brother Robert has pre-deceased her.
In 1945, Patricia graduated from Holy Angels Academy in Milwaukee, WI. She then studied at Marquette University from 1945 – 1946 before entering the Maryknoll Sisters Novitiate in Maryknoll, NY on October 5th, 1946.
Patricia continued her studies after entering the Novitiate, she attended Maryknoll Teachers College in 1947 and from 1948-1952 studied at the College of Mount St. Vincent in Riverdale, NY where she earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Nursing.
On April 6th, 1949 she made her First Profession of Vows at the Maryknoll Sisters Center, Maryknoll, NY and her Final Profession of Vows on April 6th, 1952 also at the Sisters’ Center.
In 1952, Sister Patricia received her first overseas mission assignment to Ceylon (Sri Lanka) where she worked as a Nursing Supervisor in a government hospital in Kandy and later as a head nurse in Kundasale. From 1962 – 1963, she returned to Maryknoll, NY to work at Bethany House, the Sisters’ nursing home.
In 1964, after earning her Master’s Degree in Surgical Nursing at Catholic University in Washington, D.C. she was assigned to Pusan, Korea where she served as Dean at the Maryknoll Junior College of Nursing. From 1966-1977, Sister Patricia led a nursing instruction team and was then Director and Chairperson of the Board of Public Health Cooperative in Hupo from 1978-1981.
In 1982, she returned to Maryknoll, NY once again this time to serve as Director of Nursing Services at the Sisters’ Nursing Home from 1982-1984. Returning to Seoul, Korea in 1985, her ministry changed to social services and pastoral care with young women factory workers until 1995.
In 1996, Sister Patricia relocated to Jilin Province in China where she taught English as a second language until 2003 when she returned again to Seoul, Korea and re-entered the medical ministry as a Physical Therapist. There, she was one of two Maryknoll Sisters who founded the Miriam Center for Migrant Workers, which was recognized as one of the best practices of social integration in action by the U.N.’s Non-Governmental Committee on Social Development in 2010.
In 2006, Sister Patricia was assigned to the Maryknoll Sisters retirement house in Monrovia, CA where she was involved in many volunteer projects and served as house clinic nurse. In 2018, she retired at the Maryknoll Sisters Center, Maryknoll, NY.
Sister Patricia generously donated her body to science.