Sister Marie Christelle Zabalerio, M.M. , Maryknoll Sister for 56 Years Dies

Maryknoll, NY: Sister Marie Christelle Zabalerio, M.M. died on April 28th, 2020. She was 82 years old and had been a Maryknoll Sister for 56 years. Marie was born in Lucena, Philippines on January 11th, 1939 to Segundina (Padillo) Zabalerio and Eugeniano Zabalerio. She had one sister, Lyda and two brothers, Rolando and Generoso; she is survived by her brother Generoso.

Marie attended Maryknoll Academy High School in Lucena City, PH from 1951-1955. Following her graduation, she enrolled at Maryknoll College in Manila, where she earned a Bachelor of Education Degree in 1959. For the next two years, she taught at Maryknoll Academy High School.

On June 1st, 1963, she entered the Maryknoll Sisters Novitiate in Quezon City, PH. At her Reception she was given the religious name, Sister Marie Christelle, a name she retained throughout her life. She made her First Profession of Vows in the Philippines on March 19th, 1966 and her Final Vows on May 17th, 1970, also in the Philippines.

Sister Marie Christelle received her first mission assignment to the Philippines in 1966, she served as a grade school teacher at Maryknoll School in Quezon City until 1968. She was then appointed as Principal of the College of St. John the Baptist in Jimenez where she served until 1971. For the next few years, she continued to teach English, Religion and Catechetical classes at Sto. Tomas, Maryknoll High School and in the public elementary school. In 1972, Sister Marie Christelle broadened her services to include parish work at Sto. Tomas San Miguel Parish. There she took on various roles: Youth Coordinator, Advisor to Volunteer Catechists, Seminar Organizer for Women and an Active Member of the Deanery and Prelature Youth Commission.

In 1976, Sister Marie Christelle returned to the U.S. to attend Trocaire College, Buffalo, NY she earned an Associate of Applied Science Degree in Nursing in 1978. She then returned to the Maryknoll Sisters Center, NY where she worked as a Nurse’s Aide at the Congregations Bethany Nursing Home until 1979. She spent the next few years working at the Veterans Administration Hospital in Montrose, NY, where she received a “Certificate of Appreciation” after 100 hours of service in 1981.

Sister Marie Christelle spent the next 11 years in Bangladesh serving as a Field Supervisor of a Natural Family Planning Program in the Kulna Region. Her work also included family counseling, pre-marriage courses, preparation of lay leaders, neighborhood Christian community involvement and training women to teach natural family planning until 1990.

She returned to the Philippines for “family ministry” in 1991, during her time there she set up special seminars for Maryknoll Sisters and engaged in ecumenical work. Following her family ministry, Sister Marie Christelle returned to the Maryknoll Sisters Center, NY to take special courses in religious formation. She was then appointed as a member of the Congregation’s Orientation Team. In 2001, she continued her education and earned a Master’s Degree in Pastoral Studies from Loyola College, Chicago, IL.

Sister Marie Christelle was assigned to Aileu, East Timor in 2004, where she engaged in community-based health work, taught English, was an advisor at the Catholic High School and introduced the Natural Family Planning Program.

In 2014 she returned to the Maryknoll Sisters Center in NY to retire.

Funeral Services: Due to the Coronavirus pandemic, funeral services will be scheduled for a date in the future when group gatherings are deemed safe. Sister Marie Christelle’s family and our community remember her soul in prayer during this difficult time.

Sister Virginia Farrell M.M. , Maryknoll Sister for 55 Years Dies

Maryknoll, NY: Sister Virginia Farrell, M.M. died on April 14th, 2020 at the Maryknoll Sisters Center in Maryknoll, NY. She had been a Maryknoll Sister for 55 years and was 94 years old. Virginia was born in Paterson, NJ on August 12th, 1925 to Mildred (Pyle) Farrell and George Farrell. She had one sister, Mrs. Ruth Paules and two brothers, George and Thomas.

Virginia attended Bassick High School in Bridgeport, CT from 1939-1943. Following graduation, she attended the University of Connecticut and earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Nursing in 1948.

From 1948-1964, she engaged in various medical positions: Instructor at University of Connecticut School of Nursing in Storrs, CT (1948-1949); Polio nursing-private duty (1949), Pediatrics Staff Nurse at New York Hospital in New York, NY (1950), Instructor at St. Joseph School of Nursing in San Francisco, CA  (1950 – 1952), U.S. Army Nurse Corps with assignments to Korea where she met the Maryknoll Sisters and served as a volunteer during her off-time at their Pusan Clinic (1952-1961), Germany with the Mobile Army Surgical training Unit – MASH, and Iran to help set up their Army Nurse Corps.

In 1955, she earned a Master’s Degree in Nursing from the Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C.; she also served as a member of the U.S. Army Nurse Corps during this time. From 1961-1963, Virginia joined the U.S. Agency for International Development (AID), to serve as Hospital Nursing Services Advisor in Managua, Nicaragua. While she was in Nicaragua, she also volunteered as a nurse with the Maryknoll Sisters for a few months in Siuna.

Virginia followed her calling and entered the Maryknoll Sisters Novitiate in Valley Park, Missouri on October 18th, 1964. She made her First Profession of Vows at the Maryknoll Sisters Center, Maryknoll, NY on June 24th, 1967 and her Final Vows on June 22nd, 1974 at the Maryknoll Sisters residence in Rhode Island.

In 1968, Sister Virginia was assigned to Vietnam where she was appointed Field Director of a Medical Team designed to work with Vietnamese counterparts in provincial hospitals. After two years, she was then assigned to South America to work with the World Health Organization (WHO) in Peru, participating in emergency and relief organizations following the terrible earthquake in Huaraz which took approximately 50,000 lives. Her work with (WHO) also took her to Nicaragua where she organized a clinic in the outskirts of Managua.

In 1971, Sister Virginia returned to the Maryknoll Sisters Center, Maryknoll, NY to provide aid to the ill and elderly Sisters at the Congregations Nursing Home. In 1972, she was assigned to Appalachian Regional Hospital in Hazard, KY to serve as Head Nurse of the Extended Care Facility and Coordinator of the Hospital In-Service Education Program until 1978. She then served as Hospital Outreach Coordinator with the Ephraim McDowell Community Cancer Center in Hazard, KY until 1980.

Sister Virginia had a passion for caring for the ill and elderly, responding to the need in the Hazard, KY community she founded the “Hazard/Perry County Community Hospice, Inc.” in 1979.  The hospice program allowed families to be with their loved ones in the final stages of their life. Sister Virginia served as Director of the Hospice until 1992 when she retired.

In 2005, she returned to the Maryknoll Sisters Center, Maryknoll, NY.

Funeral Services: Due to the Coronavirus pandemic, funeral services will be scheduled for a date in the future when group gatherings are deemed safe. Sister Virginia’s family and our community remember her soul in prayer during this difficult time.

Sister Frances Calcaterra M.M. , Maryknoll Sister for 69 Years Dies

Maryknoll, NY: Sister Frances Calcaterra, M.M. died on April 13th, 2020 at the Maryknoll Sisters Center in Maryknoll, NY. She had been a Maryknoll Sister for 69 years. Frances was born in Highland Park, MI on March 20th, 1931 to Catherine (Loche) Calcaterra and Angelo Calcaterra. She had one sister, Dolores who was also her twin.

Frances attended Blessed Sacrament High School in Detroit, MI from 1945-1949. Following her graduation, she attended Marygrove College also in Detroit, MI from 1949 – 1950.

She then entered the Maryknoll Sisters Novitiate in Valley Park, MI on February 1st, 1951. She made her First Vows on September 8th, 1953 at Valley Park, MO and her Final Vows on September 8th, 1959 at the Maryknoll Sisters Center, Maryknoll, NY.

From 1953-1957, Sister Frances did Congregational Service at the Maryknoll Sisters Center, Maryknoll, NY while she continued her studies at Maryknoll Teachers College (located on the property of the Sisters Center). In 1957, she earned a Bachelor in Education Degree.

Sister Frances then began her teaching career at the Transfiguration Parish School in Chinatown, NYC from 1957-1966. She was then assigned to the Maryknoll High School in Punahou, Hawaii to teach Theology and engaged in student counseling. There, she also earned her Master’s Degree in Educational Counseling at the University of Hawaii in 1973. From 1972-1979, she remained at Maryknoll High school to serve as Guidance Director/Counselor and continued teaching Theology.

In 1979, Frances moved to Waimanalo, HI where she worked in a program focused on traditional Hawaiian culture and values for four years.

In 1982, she returned to Berkley, MI to engage in family ministry, caring for her elderly parents. During this time, she also worked at Marian High School in Birmington, MI as a Guidance Counselor until 1991.

In 1993, Sister Frances became a member of the Maryknoll Sisters U.S. Eastern Region and remained a member until 2012. During that time, she continued to engage in student counseling and also did various volunteer work.  She then returned to the Maryknoll Sisters Center, Maryknoll, NY in 2016 to retire.

Funeral Services: Due to the Coronavirus pandemic, funeral services will be scheduled for a date in the future when group gatherings are deemed safe. Sister Frances’s family and our community remember her spirit in prayer during this difficult time.

Sister Patricia Alice Noble M.M. , Maryknoll Sister for 72 Years Dies


Maryknoll, NY:
Sister Patricia Alice Noble, M.M. died on April 4th, 2020 at the Maryknoll Sisters Center in Maryknoll, NY. She was 95 years old and had been a Maryknoll Sister for 72 years.

Patricia was born in Erie, Pennsylvania on May 6th, 1924 to Minnie Mae (Bartels) Noble and Edward Franklin Noble. She had one brother, Edward who has predeceased her.

Patricia attended Millcreek High School in Erie, PA from 1938-1942. Following her high school graduation, she attended college at the University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA from 1942 – 1944. She then transferred to Villa Maria College, Erie, PA where she earned a Bachelor of Arts Degree in English in 1945.

On September 6th, 1947, Patricia entered the Maryknoll Sisters Novitiate at the Maryknoll Sisters Center, Maryknoll, NY and made her First Vows on March 7th, 1950 also at the Maryknoll Sisters Center. After making her First Vows, she received her first mission assignment to Honolulu, HI. There, she taught 7th grade at St. Anthony School until 1954.  While on mission in Honolulu, she made her Final Vows on March 7th, 1953 and was then assigned to Maryknoll High School in Punahou, HI to teach English and History until 1956.

In 1956, Sister Patricia relocated to the Philippines where she taught English at Maryknoll College in Quezon City for four years. In 1960, she returned to the United States to further her education and study at St. Louis University, St. Louis, MO. There, she earned a Master’s Degree in English and Philosophy in 1962. She returned to the Philippines after earning her Degree to teach English and History in various different schools until 1964.

Sister Patricia then returned to the Maryknoll Sisters Center, Maryknoll NY to teach English at Mary Rogers College (located on the property of the Sisters Center until 1969. For the next ten years, she worked in several different departments at the Maryknoll Sisters Center: Congregational Services, Housekeeping and Data Processing. In 1980, she was appointed as the Maryknoll Sisters Library Administrator; during this time, she also took classes at Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, NY. In 1982, she earned a Master of Science Degree in Library and Information Science.

In 1988, Sister Patricia retired to the Maryknoll Sisters residence in Monrovia, CA, but still remained an active volunteer. From 1989-2003, she assisted in the setup of the Library of the Peace and Justice Center of Southern California in Los Angeles. From 2001-2006, she worked as a volunteer at the Los Angeles Arboretum: one year as an assistant in the Arboretum Library and six years as assistant in the herb garden. From 1988 – 2006, Sister Patricia was in charge of the two libraries at the Maryknoll Sisters residence in Monrovia

In 2006, Sister Patricia returned to the Maryknoll Sisters Center, Maryknoll, NY to work in the Sisters Photo Library.

Funeral Services: Due to the Coronavirus pandemic, funeral services will be scheduled for a date in the future when group gatherings are deemed safe. Sister Patricia’s family and our community remember her soul in prayer during this difficult time.

Sister Rose Christopher McKeegan, M.M. , Maryknoll Sister for 70 Years Dies

Maryknoll, NY: Sister Rose Christopher McKeegan, M.M. died on April 2nd, 2020 at the Maryknoll Sisters Center in Maryknoll, NY. She was 89 years old and had been a Maryknoll Sister for 70 years!

Rose Christopher was born in Brooklyn, NY on May 3rd, 1930 to Elizabeth (Quinn) McKeegan and Joseph McKeegan. She had three brothers: John, Daniel and Joseph and one sister: Elizabeth Ann. She is survived by her sister.

From 1944-1948, Rose Christopher attended St. Joseph Commercial High School in Brooklyn, NY. Following graduation, she worked as a typist at the New York Telephone Company for two years. She then entered the Maryknoll Sisters Novitiate in Maryknoll, NY on September 6th, 1950 from (St. Anthony of Padua Parish in Brooklyn, NY). She made her First Vows on March 7th, 1953 at the Maryknoll Sisters Center, Maryknoll, NY and her Final Vows on March 7th, 1959 also at the Maryknoll Sisters Center.

From 1955-1959, Sister Rose Christopher earned a Bachelor of Education Degree from Maryknoll Teachers College (located on the property of the Maryknoll Sisters Center, Maryknoll, NY).  While studying for her degree, she worked at the Maryknoll Seminary building across the street in the kitchen. She was then assigned as the Supervisor of the laundry room at the Maryknoll Sisters Center.

In 1959 after earning her Degree, Sister Rose Christopher received her first overseas mission assignment to the Bolivia – Peru Region. She studied the Spanish language in Cochabamba, Bolivia for one year and was then assigned to teach in a high school in Riberalta, Bolivia.  In 1964, Sister Rose Christopher returned to Cochabamba to work at the Maryknoll High School, there she was in charge of the sports program and taught shorthand and English.

From 1972-1976, she was elected as Regional Governing Board Area Coordinator for Cochabamba as well as Regional Bookkeeper

In 1965, Sister Rose Christopher began a new venture, initiating the Girl Scouts Program for the first time ever in Cochabamba! From 1973-1980, she served as President of the Girl Scouts. She was honored for her services and received the

Gold Medal Award by the Girl Scouts for “Outstanding Service to Bolivian Youth” in 1992.

She then returned to the Maryknoll Sisters Center, Maryknoll NY for a brief period to engage in Congregational Services from 1980-1982. However, at the end of that year she returned to Cochabamba, Bolivia to resume teaching at Maryknoll High School and served as Coordinator of Religious Education in both the grade school and high school. She also continued working with the Girl Scouts Program until 1999.

From 1999-2014, Sister Rose Christopher remained in Cochabamba as a member of the Santa Ana Parish.  There, she served as Principal of Santa Ana de Cala Cala School and served as Administrator of Dispensaria (the Parish clinic). In 2016, she returned to the Maryknoll Sisters Center, Maryknoll, NY to retire.

Sister Rose Christopher McKeegan’s body was cremated and interred in the Maryknoll Sisters Cemetery, Maryknoll, NY on April 4th, 2020. 

Funeral Services will be scheduled for a date in the future when group gatherings are deemed safe, due to the Coronavirus pandemic. Sister Rose Christopher’s family and our community remember her soul in prayer during this difficult time.

 

Sister Madeleine Giusto, Maryknoll Sister for 51 Years Dies

Maryknoll, NY: Sister Madeleine Giusto, M.M. died on March 30th, 2020 at Phelps Memorial Hospital in Sleepy Hollow, NY. She was 79 years old and had been a Maryknoll Sister for 51 years.

Madeleine was born on May 27th, 1940 in Chicago, Illinois to Margaret (Pinscak) Giusto and Thomas Giusto. She had three brothers and four sisters. She is survived by her brother Donald Giusto and her sisters, Diane Winans and Jacqueline Maslow.

From 1954-1958, Madeleine attended high school at St. Louis Academy in Chicago, IL. Following graduation, she enrolled in Roseland Community Hospital School for Nurses in Chicago, IL. In 1961, she earned her Registered Nurse Diploma and worked at the Hospital School until 1962.  She then moved to Reno, NV and worked at the Washoe Medical Center until 1968.

On September 7th, 1968 Madeleine entered the Maryknoll Sisters Novitiate in St. Louis, MO (from St. Thomas Parish, Reno, NV).  She received her first overseas mission assignment to South Korea during her second year of Formation as a Maryknoll Sister. While in South Korea, she made her First Profession of Vows on July 16th, 1971 as well as her Final Profession of Vows on July 27th, 1975. Sister Madeleine’s first mission assignment in South Korea was in Jeung Pyong, there she served as a clinic nurse and ministered to the poor/sick. She also acted as interpreter and English conversation teacher.

In 1972, Sister Madeleine returned to the Maryknoll Sisters Center, Maryknoll, NY. She served as Staff Nurse at Bethany House (the Maryknoll Sisters Nursing Home at the time) from 1973 – 1974. In 1975, she returned to Seoul, South Korea to resume her studies of the Korean language. While she was studying, she also worked as a Public Health Nurse at Samyul in Kyung Saang, Puk Do and served as a member of a Community Health Team until 1978.  That same year, she moved to So Rok Do to care for patients with Hansen Disease until 1984. She then returned to the Maryknoll Sisters Center, Maryknoll, NY to serve another term as Staff Nurse in the Sisters Nursing Home. In February of that year, she once again returned to Kwangju, South Korea where she was involved in a student ministry until 1988.

From 1988-1992, Sister Madeleine was called back to the Maryknoll Sisters Center, Maryknoll, NY serving as Staff Nurse in the Sisters Nursing Home. She was then assigned to the Maryknoll Mission Education Department’s Mid-West area from 1992-1994.  After that, she returned to the Maryknoll Sisters Center, Maryknoll, NY to serve as Staff Nurse for one year in the Sisters nursing Home.

On February 1st, 1997 Sister Madeleine returned to Kwangju, South Korea for the final time to serve as a visiting nurse until 2000. She also taught English classes to university students and did volunteer work at St. John of God Clinic and Hospice Program.

In 2001, she returned to the Sisters Center where she engaged in Congregational Support Services and in the Outpatient Clinic until 2002. She was then appointed as Hospitality Coordinator of the Maryknoll Sisters Mission Institute.

Sister Madeleine retired in 2004 at the Maryknoll Sisters House in Monrovia, CA, but still remained an active volunteer. She became involved in several different volunteer projects: working with the Blind community in Los Angeles; participating in community service in the Monrovia Civic Communities; and working at Santa Anita Family Service Center.

On December 1st, 2015 she returned to the Maryknoll Sisters Center, Maryknoll, NY where she joined the Chi Rho Community of semi-retired Sisters.

Funeral Services: Due to the Coronavirus pandemic, funeral services will be scheduled for a date in the future when group gatherings are deemed safe. Sister Madeleine’s family and our community remember her soul in prayer during this difficult time.

Sister Veronica Mary Martin, Maryknoll Sister Dies at age 100

Maryknoll, NY: Sister Veronica Mary Martin, M.M. died on March 16th, 2020 at the Maryknoll Sisters Center in Maryknoll, NY. She had just celebrated her 100th birthday a few months ago and was a Maryknoll Sister for 78 years! She was born in Philadelphia, PA to Catherine V. (Hopkins) Martin and John Patrick Martin; she received the baptismal name Anne Helen. She had four brothers and five sisters, all of whom have pre-deceased her.

Anne attended John W. Hallahan Girls High School, in Philadelphia, PA. Following her graduation in 1937, she enrolled in Pierce Business College for one year. She then worked in the U.S. Census Department in Washington, D.C. as a clerk until October, 1941.

Anne entered the Maryknoll Sisters Novitiate at the Maryknoll Sisters Center, Maryknoll, NY on December 8th, 1941 (from St. Monica Parish, Philadelphia, PA). She received the religious name Sister Veronica Mary.  In 1944, she made her First Profession of Vows on June 30th at the Maryknoll Sisters Center, Maryknoll, NY and her Final Vows on the same date in 1947, also at the Sisters center.

From 1943-1947, Sister Veronica attended classes at Maryknoll Teachers College, Maryknoll, NY where she earned a Bachelor of Education Degree. In 1947 after graduating, she received her first overseas mission assignment to Hong Kong where she taught at Maryknoll Convent School. In October of that same year, she was transferred to Hawaii to serve as assistant at a Maryknoll Pre-school.

In 1948, Sister Veronica Mary returned to the Sisters Center, Maryknoll, NY where she served her community for the next 48 years as clerk and typist: in the Direct Mail Office, the Congregational Archives, and as a Post Office clerk in the Maryknoll Post Office.

She then retired, but remained an active volunteer at the Maryknoll Sisters Center from 1987-2004.

Sister Veronica Mary had generously donated her body to science, but due to the current global situation with the Coronavirus, the New York medical College is not accepting bodies at this time. The cremated ashes will be buried in the Maryknoll Sisters Cemetery.

A Vesper Service and a Memorial Mass for Sister Veronica Mary Martin will be scheduled at a later date.

 

Sister Joan Marie Berninger, Maryknoll Sisters for 66 Years Dies

Sister Joan Marie Berninger, M.M.Maryknoll, NY: Sister Joan Marie Berninger, M.M. died on February 10th, 2020 at the Maryknoll Sisters Center, Maryknoll, NY. She was 86 years old and had been a Maryknoll Sister for 66 years.

She was born in LaSalle, IL to Lillian (Funfsinn) Berninger and John Berninger.  She had two brothers and three sisters: John, Michael, Janet, Lynne, and Sally.

Joan attended high school at the Academy of Our Lady in Peoria, IL from 1947 -1951. She then worked as a secretary and parish organist/piano accompanist before entering the Maryknoll Sisters Novitiate on September 2nd, 1953 (from St. Bernard Parish, Peoria, IL).  She made her First Profession of Vows on March 7th, 1956 at the Maryknoll Sisters Center, Maryknoll, NY and her Final Vows on March 7th, 1962, also at the Sisters Center.

In 1958, Sister Joan attended classes at Maryknoll Teachers College (located on the Sisters property in Maryknoll, NY); she received a Bachelor’s of Education Degree in 1962.  She continued her studies at Manhattanville College in Harrison, NY and received a Master’s Degree in Liberal Studies and Theology in 1967. She then attended New Mexico State University, where she earned a Master’s Degree in Education in 1987. Other significant studies over the years included Buddhism, Bible as literature, and language study in Portuguese and Spanish.

From 1956-1967, she served at the Sisters Center, Maryknoll, NY working in the administration office and teaching art at Maryknoll Teachers College.

Sister Joan was then assigned to St. Anthony School in Wailuku, HI. There, she taught religion, art and served as a student counselor until 1977.

In 1978, she returned to the Maryknoll Sisters Center, Maryknoll, NY and was appointed Director of the Maryknoll Sisters Mission Institute until 1981. She then served as Coordinator of the Sisters Center from 1982 -1985.

In 1986, Sister Joan transferred to the Western U.S. Region and taught at Immaculate Heart of Mary School in Las Cruces, New Mexico until 1988, when she was promoted to Principal.  She then served as the first Supervisor of Catholic Elementary Schools in the Las Cruces Diocese from 1989-2001.

In 2002, Sister Joan returned to the Maryknoll Sisters Center to serve as Coordinator of Congregational Services until 2012. In 2013, she relocated to Chicago to join the Integration/Formation Community, but returned to the Maryknoll Sisters Center in 2014. She served as a Secretary in the Maryknoll Sisters Nursing Home Care Unit until 2019.

A Vespers service will be held for Sister Joan on Wednesday, February 12th, 2020 at 4:15 p.m. in the Chapel of the Annunciation at the Maryknoll Sisters Center.

A Memorial Mass will follow on Thursday, February 13th, 2020 at 11:00 a.m., also in the Chapel of the Annunciation at the Maryknoll Sisters Center. 

 Sister Joan has very generously offered her body to science.

Sister Helen Kenny, Maryknoll Sisters for 70 Years Dies

Maryknoll, NY: Sister Helen Marie Kenny died on January 4th, 2020 at the Maryknoll Sisters Center in Maryknoll, NY. She was 88 years old and had been a Maryknoll Sister for 70 years.

Helen was born in Manhattan, New York to Margaret (Hanley) Kenny and James Patrick Kenny.  She had three sisters, Peggy, Mary Ellen and Catherine and one brother, James Joseph. All of her siblings except Catherine have predeceased her.

Helen attended high school at St. Agnes Academy in College Point, NY from 1945 -1949. After graduating, she entered the Maryknoll Sisters Novitiate at the Maryknoll Fathers Seminary in Scranton, PA on September 6th, 1949 (from Holy Family parish in the Brooklyn Diocese, NY). She made her First Profession of Vows on March 7th, 1952 at the Maryknoll Sisters Center in Maryknoll, NY and her Final Vows on March 7th, 1955, also at the Sisters Center.

After her profession of vows in 1952, Sister Helen worked in the kitchen at both the Maryknoll Fathers Seminary in Scranton, PA and their property in Maryknoll, NY until 1954. She then enrolled in Catherine Laboure School of Nursing in Boston, MA and became a Registered Nurse in 1957. Following graduation, she was assigned to Kansas City, MO to serve as Nursing Supervisor at Queen of the World Hospital.

Sister Helen received her first overseas mission assignment to Hong Kong in 1958, there she studied language and served as a nurse at Kwun Tong Clinic.

In 1961, she was assigned to Our Lady of Maryknoll Hospital in Wong Tai Sin, Hong Kong, where she was Operating Room and Ward Supervisor until 1964. She then returned to the Maryknoll Sisters Center, NY to serve as infirmary nurse until 1966.

From 1966-1967, Sister Helen attended classes at Mary Rogers College (located on the property of the Sisters Center), before transferring to Villanova University, PA where she earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Nursing in 1969. She then earned a Master’s Degree in Nursing Administration at Columbia University, NY in 1970.

After furthering her education, Sister Helen returned to Hong Kong once again to serve as Nursing Service Director for 260 patients at Maryknoll Hospital from 1970-1984.

In 1985, she returned to the Maryknoll Sisters Center, NY for congregational service in the Sisters nursing home until 1988, when she returned to Hong Kong to set-up a hospice care unit at Maryknoll Hospital.

In 1990, she began a period of extensive volunteering in Hong Kong for the next several years:

  • Honorary Secretary for the Hospice Board and Executive Committee (1990-2000)
  • Helped setup the first hospice in Hong Kong (Bradbury Hospice Center) (1997-2005)
  • Served on the Board of Governors at Our Lady of Maryknoll Hospital and at the Hospital Authority (1998-2011)
  • Served as advisor on the Hong Kong Cancer Fund Steering Committee (2006-2012)
  • Volunteer with the Keswick Foundation and Make A Wish Foundation (1993-1997)
  • Helped reorganized and developed the Palliative Care Unit at Maryknoll Hospital (1998-2000)
  • Helped set-up Maggie’s Cancer Caring Center, the first such center outside of the UK. (2006-2008)

In 2012, Sister Helen returned to the Maryknoll Sisters Center, NY to retire.

A Vespers service was held for Sister Helen Kenny on January 7th, 2020 at 4:15 p.m. in the Chapel of the Annunciation at the Maryknoll Sisters Center.

A funeral Mass followed on Wednesday, January 8th, 2020 at 11:00 a.m., also in the Chapel of the Annunciation at the Maryknoll Sisters Center.

Interment followed in the Maryknoll Sisters Cemetery on the Center grounds.

 

Sister Claire Murphy, Maryknoll Sisters for 78 Years Dies

Maryknoll, NY: Sister Claire Therese Murphy died on November 30th, 2019 at the Maryknoll Sisters Center, Maryknoll, NY. She was 97 years old and had been a Maryknoll Sister for 78 years.

She was born in Cambridge, Massachusetts on November 21st, 1922 to Mary (McDonald) Murphy and Patrick J. Murphy. She had two sisters, Claire and Mary, both of whom have pre-deceased her.

Claire attended St. John’s High School in North Cambridge, MA and graduated in 1940. After graduating, she attended Burrough’s Business College for one year. She then entered the Maryknoll Sisters Novitiate at the Maryknoll Sisters Center in Maryknoll, New York on July 2nd, 1941 from (St. Peter’s Parish in Cambridge, MA).  At her Reception she received the religious name, Sister Mary Claire Therese. She made her first Profession of Vows on March 7th, 1944 at the Maryknoll Sisters Center, Maryknoll, NY and her Final Vows on March 7th, 1947 in Los Angeles, California.

Sister Claire’s first assignment was to a children’s home in a Japanese community in Los Angeles, CA from 1946-1949. She was then assigned to Los Altos, CA to serve on the kitchen staff at Mountain View (the Maryknoll Fathers Junior Seminary). She also taught religious education among migrant workers in the area.

From 1951-1956, she was assigned to Hawaii where she taught in St. Michael’s School in Waialua and St. Anthony’s School in Kalihi. She then returned to the Maryknoll Sisters Center, Maryknoll NY to study at Maryknoll Teachers College (located on the Sisters Center property) receiving a Bachelor’s Degree in Education in 1959. After earning her degree, Sister Claire was assigned to the Marshall Islands, there she taught in the grade schools in Likiep and Majuro from 1959-1971. She returned to the Maryknoll Sisters Center, Maryknoll, NY in 1971 to give Congregational Service in the Development Department.

In 1974, Sister Claire was assigned to Kenya, East Africa, there she taught religious education in Nakuru and served as a staff member at the Sisters dispensary. In 1983, she was assigned to the Sisters Africa World Section House in Nairobi where she served for three years. Sister Claire returned to the U.S. to work in the Congregation’s General Secretariat Office until 1990, when she returned to Nairobi, Kenya to work at the Sisters Africa World Section House.

In 1994, she returned to the Sisters Center, Maryknoll, NY and was placed in charge of the Hospitality Office until 2000.  Sister Claire then responded to a need for volunteers to work as pastoral agents in the Diocese of Duluth, MN at the Indian Reservation in Cloquet. There, she served as Pastoral Assistant at Holy Family Parish until 2007 when she retired.

Sister Claire generously donated her body to science.

A Vespers Service will be held for Sister Claire Murphy on Tuesday, December 10th at 4:15 p.m. in the Chapel of the Annunciation at the Maryknoll Sisters Center.

A Memorial Mass will follow on Wednesday December 11th at 11:00 a.m. also in the Chapel of the Annunciation at the Maryknoll Sisters Center.