Current Ministry Location: Maryknoll Sisters Center, Maryknoll, NY
Sister Cecilia was born April 9th, 1924 in Boston, MA to Catherine (MacEachern) LeBlanc and Alfred LeBlanc. She had one sister and one brother. Cecilia graduated from St. Patrick’s High School, Roxbury, MA in 1943.
Sister Cecilia entered the Congregation from St. Patrick’s Parish, Roxbury, MA September 7th, 1943. She pronounced First Vows March 7th, 1946 and Final Vows March 7th, 1949 both at the Maryknoll, Sisters Center, Maryknoll, NY.
Sister Cecilia’s first assignment was to “feed the hungry” at the Maryknoll Fathers and Brothers seminary, Mountain View, CA. In 1948, she went to Monrovia, CA where the Maryknoll Sisters administered a tuberculosis sanatorium, opened originally for the Japanese people who had been in concentration camps during WWII. While she worked in dietetics, and visited patients, she had the unique blessing of living with the Maryknoll Sisters Foundress, Mother Mary Joseph Rogers, and almost every evening she would drop in for a chat with her. On days off she was often included in car excursions with Mother. She felt she came to know our Foundress in a very special way.
In 1957, Sister Cecilia received an assignment to Africa where she went to Maryknoll Language School in Musoma, Tanzania earning a Certificate and spent thirteen years in Tanzania and Zambia. In Kowak she remembers a wood-burning cast iron stove in the kitchen which had Modern Mistress written across the oven door. Even while studying the Luo language she began visiting villages. Her ministries included catechetical work, teaching and school administration. In Isango Middle School she not only taught but “mothered” many of the young students. Away from their families, they experienced loneliness in a boarding school with students from many different tribes. In Zambia she taught in the Isoka Boys’ Secondary School.
Sister Cecilia returned to Sisters Center where she studied at Rogers College earning a Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education in 1969.
She earned a Master of Arts degree in English Literature from the State University of NY in New Paltz in 1971 and a Certificate in Gerontology from the University of New Hampshire, Durham, NH in 1985.
Assigned to the Eastern U.S. Region in 1975, Sister Cecilia began thirteen years of teaching junior and senior high school classes in Stratford and Laconia, NH.
In 2013, she was assigned to the Sisters Center, Maryknoll, NY to begin her retirement.