Sister Mary Lou Herlihy



United States

mlherlihy_lgSister Mary Lou Herlihy is describing Hendersonville, NC, where she lives with two other Maryknoll Sisters (Mary Lou in white blouse). She has responded to various needs through the years. With her Masters in Social Work, she has been a case worker for an apartment complex for low-income seniors and physically challenged people. Presently, she serves as a tutor with kindergarteners and first-graders though the Senior Corps Foster Grandparents Program.

Sister Mary Lou brings a wealth of experience to her ministries, having lived for more than ten years in Rochester, NY where she was on the staff of a Catholic Worker House of Hospitality. women’s shelter, women’s drop-in center and food and clothing cupboard. As a day care worker, she participated in a community called HIS (Integrating the Handicapped into Society), founded by a Jesuit priest. With the help of volunteers they hosted meals and a time of fellowship to welcome the blind, lame, those with marketable skill,s and those on disability or unemployment insurance. She was school social worker for Hope Hall, an alternative school for children who have difficulty learning in a traditional classroom.

Born in Rochester, NY, Sister Mary Lou entered Maryknoll in 1961 after a year of study at D’Youville College in Buffalo. She was assigned to Korea in 1969 and after language study, worked with Young Christian Workers groups.

Sister Mary Lou received an Urban Development Certificate from Yonsei University in Seoul and became involved in the labor apostolate, visiting homes and teaching English to labor union officers, as well as offering courses to women who wished to devote their lives to Christ in the labor apostolate. Her interest in helping physically challenged children grew as she taught them in a rehabilitation hospital.