Sister Nancy Thomas M.M. Maryknoll Sister for 77 Years, Dies

Maryknoll, NY: Sister Nancy Thomas,M.M. died on Sunday, March 3, 2024 at the Maryknoll Sisters Center, Maryknoll, NY. She was 96 years old and a Maryknoll Sister for 77 years.

On November 8, 1927, Nancy R. Thomas was born in Washington, DC to Wilhelmenia F. Vogts and Ignatius G. Thomas.  She had one brother, Norbourn and one sister, Mary Clare; all have predeceased her.

From 1941 to 1945, Sister Nancy attended Mount Saint Agnes High School in Baltimore, Maryland.   She earned an Associate of Arts Degree at Mount Saint Agnes Junior College in 1947 in Baltimore, Maryland.  She then attended Maryknoll Teachers College (Rogers College) from 1949 to 1952 in Maryknoll, New York, and earned her Bachelor of Education Degree.

She entered the Maryknoll Sisters at Valley Park, Missouri on October 30, 1947, from her home parish of Shrine of Sacred Heart in Baltimore.  She pronounced her First Profession of Vows on May 8, 1950, in Valley Park, Missouri, and her Final Vows on May 8, 1953, in Hawaii.

In 1952, she received her first mission assignment as a Primary School Teacher in Kaneohe, moving to Punahou in 1954, and Waikiki in 1959 for different grade levels in each area until 1968.  From 1968 to 1972, she was the Principal of the Elementary School in Honolulu, Hawaii.

Sister returned to the Maryknoll Sisters Center, Maryknoll, New York in 1972 for Congregational Services in the Development Department as Promotion Director until 1975.  She was assigned to Riberalta, Bolivia for one year in 1975 as a staff member of the Rural Pastoral Institute in the Pando Vicariate.  From 1977 to 1979 she continued doing pastoral work in the Cristo Rey Parish in Cochabamba, Bolivia.

In 1980, Sister moved to the Western United States Region in Seattle, Washington for her next assignment.  There she was a Receptionist and then an Assistant Activity Director in a nursing home until 1981.  She moved to Gilroy, California in 1981 until 2022.  During this period, she held various positions and titles, as part of the Western US Region. She was Director of Religious Education; she volunteered as Rape Crisis Advocate with NextDoor Solutions; a member of Women in Black, an international group that protests against violence and war; a volunteer at Emergency Housing Consortium Homeless Shelters; an advocate for survivors of sexual abuse and domestic violence, and a member of the informal task force for building transitional shelters.

Sister Nancy served on the Regional Governing Board for the Western US Region in Finance and Planning from 1983 to 1987, and in Personnel and Finance from 1990 to 2002. In 2005, she was on the Leadership Team for the Western US Region.

In 2022, Sister returned to the Maryknoll Sisters Center, Maryknoll, NY to retire until her passing on March 3, 2024.


Funeral Services:

A Vespers Service will be held for Sister Nancy Thomas on Thursday, March 7, 2024, at 4:15 p.m. in the Chapel of the Annunciation at the Maryknoll Sisters Center, Maryknoll, NY.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be held on Friday, March 8, 2024, at 10:00 A.M. at the Maryknoll Sisters Center.