Current Mission Location – Maryknoll Sisters Center- Maryknoll, NY
Laura Magallanes was born July 22, 1927 in Los Angeles, CA to Teresa (Guerra) Magallanes and Joseph Magallanes. She had 6 brothers: Frank, Gabriel, Joseph, Michael, Nick and Ralph and 6 sisters: Rosemary, Angela, Marie, Katherine, Adela and Teresa. Laura graduated from Sacred Heart Academy High School, Los Angeles, in 1946.
Laura entered the Maryknoll Sisters October 14, 1948 at the novitiate in Valley Park, MO. She pronounced First Vows May 8, 1951 in Valley Park and Final Vows May 8, 1954 in Chile. Three years later she had completed her formation in Valley Park and embarked on her first mission assignment to Chile in 1951.
Since she was already fluent in Spanish, Sister Laura launched immediately into teaching second and third grade in Galvarino, Chile. During the next twenty years, Sister Laura continued her education ministry with great love and dedication in Chillan, Santiago, Curepto, and Talca.
In 1971, she returned to the Center in NY in order to study at the Sisters’ Rogers College where she earned a Bachelor of Science in Adult Education degree in 1971.
Finding herself back in Chile the very next year, Sister Laura became increasingly active in pastoral work. During the 22 years that followed, Sister Laura offered devoted service through home, hospital, and clinic visits; participation in local community meetings; work in poor and marginal areas of cities; and membership on a diocesan committee supporting families whose fathers had been fired, killed, or thrown in prison.
In 1994, Sister Laura returned once more to the U.S. to continue her pastoral work for fifteen years in the Western US Region. In 2009 she came home to the Center where she retired.