Sister Jeanne Rancourt
Current Ministry Location – Center, NY
Jeanne Rancourt was born December 11, 1938 in Woonsocket, RI to Irene (Heroux) Rancourt and Euclide Rancourt. She had 1 sister, Carmen. Jeanne graduated from (French-speaking) Our Lady of the Mountains Academy High School in Gorham, NH.
Jeanne Rancourt entered the Maryknoll Congregation September 2, 1956 at the Maryknoll Sisters’ Center in NY. She pronounced First Vows June 24, 1959 and Final Vows June 24, 1965 both at the Center. Her first mission assignment was to give Congregational Service at the Center in the Development Department and as the Center Secretary.
In 1965 Sister Jeanne attended the Coady International Institute in Nova Scotia, Canada earning a Certificate in Social Leadership and Community Development. The Institute is dedicated to training leaders from around the world in principles and practices of a people-based approach to community development.
Sister Jeanne received her first overseas assignment to Chile in 1965. After Language study she went to Haulpencillo, Talcahuano where from 1966 – 1971 she ministered in social work.
She returned to Maryknoll in 1971 to study at Mary Rogers College at the Sisters Center earning a Bachelor of Arts in Community Service in 1972.
Returning to Talcahuano, Sister Jeanne worked in a rehabilitation center for alcoholics and drug addicts. In 1974 she earned a diploma in Nursing becoming a licensed practical nurse in Chile and ministered in an outpatient clinic and as a pastoral agent in Haulpencillo from 1975 – 1986. At the clinic, she was involved serving as a paramedic, providing adult education, group therapy and counseling to alcoholics. At the parish, she was engaged in the formation of Christian communities and lay leaders as a retreat and counseling agent and a social worker for self-help programs
In 1986, Sister Jeanne returned to the States where she studied at Salve Regina College, Newport, RI becoming a registered nurse in 1989. On her return to Chile, she administered a home for abandoned elderly men and supervised the addition of a wing to accommodate women. She was a counselor in a rehabilitation center for alcoholics.
Assigned back to Chile, she did community-based health care until 1994 when the Maryknoll Sisters Leadership Team requested she become a member of the congregation’s Coordinators for the Rogers Community at the Sisters Center, a position she held until 1997.
In 1998, she returned to Chile where she did pastoral work in Coelemu and administered a home for abandoned elderly until 2002. She was then elected to the Sisters’ Congregational Leadership Team, serving in NY in that capacity until 2009. As usual, Sister Jeanne “walked the extra mile” and administered our retreat/renewal house for the summer of 2009, sharing some of her many talents.
Then, with great joy, she returned to her mission in Coelemu, Chile, where she was once again involved in the administration of the abandoned elderly, as well as looking after their health care. She also was involved in pastoral ministries; rehabilitation of alcoholics, both men and women; counseling, formation of lay people, retreats and pastoral work. Sister Jeanne returned to the Maryknoll Sisters Center in 2015, following completion of the Sisters’ work in Chile, and the successful turnover of the ministry to local leadership.
The Congregational Leadership Team asked Jeanne to administer the Sisters’ Vacation/Retreat House in Watch Hill, RI from 2015 to 2021. Then in 2018 a call came from the Leadership of Women Religious (LCWR) to send Sisters to help in El Paso, TX with the flood of refugees coming from Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador. Jeanne responded and spent time from Dec. 12, 2018 to Jan. 12, 2019 providing assistance to refugees in or near El Paso.