Sister Kathleen Higgins


Current Ministry Location: Maryknoll Sisters Center-Maryknoll, NY

Sister Kathleen was born September 5th, 1929 in Brooklyn, NY to Catherine (Flynn) Higgins and Albert Higgins. Kathleen had 2 brothers. She graduated from St. Joseph Juniorate Girls High School in Brooklyn in 1947.

Sister Kathleen entered the Congregation on September 6th, 1947 at the Venard in Clark Summit, PA.  After earning a Bachelor of Education degree from Maryknoll Teachers College at the Sisters Center in NY, she taught primary school in New York’s Chinatown for five years. Sister Kathleen pronounced First Vows March 7th, 1950 and Final Vows the same day in 1953 both at the Maryknoll Sisters Center, Maryknoll, NY.

In 1956 she received her first foreign mission assignment to Chile. On her arrival, Sister Kathleen dedicated herself to a year of language study.  She then continued her education ministry in primary and secondary school until 1967, when her ministry shifted to pastoral work.

After a six-month furlough in the U.S. sister Kathleen returned to Chile and immediately immersed herself in teaching and catechesis.  Full of love for the Chilean people, she served as Coordinator of Religious Education for sixth, seventh, and eighth grade children.  In addition, she moderated the parish youth group, taught English and Religion and even acted as Middle School Principal for a time.

Then, in 1972, Sister Kathleen returned to the Maryknoll Sisters Center in NY, where she worked in the Information Services and Direct Mail office of the Development Department until 1974.  After leaving NY she spent a year working in New Jersey with the Cuban population before returning to Chile to devote herself to another almost ten years of pastoral and catechetical work, including ministry to women and youth.  During her final two years in South America, Sister Kathleen gave her love and energy in the slums, ministering to the poor and marginalized through soup kitchens, sewing groups, and many other types of service.

Since 1984, Sister Kathleen has worked in various U.S. mission centers, first at the Sisters Center and the Seminary in NY then in San Jose, Redwood City, Los Angeles, and finally Monrovia, where she was an active and loving member of the Monrovia community. Throughout these years in California, she served in pastoral, teaching, and catechetical work:  serving in numerous ways, from homeless shelters and RCIA programs to Bible groups and ESL classes.

In 2018 Sister Kathleen retired to the Maryknoll Sisters Center, Maryknoll,NY where she continues to reside and to be an active and loving member of the Center community.