“The mission work demonstrated in the Maryknoll Magazine seemed so vital and interesting that I wanted to become part of it.”
Caring for the sick and needy has always been at the heart of Sister Teresa Lilly’s ministry.
Born in 1927 in Brooklyn, NY, Sister Teresa entered Maryknoll in 1956 from Holy Child Parish in Richmond Hills, NY, following eight years as a registered nurse at St. Catherine’s Hospital, Brooklyn.
After taking her first vows in 1959, Sister Teresa began her first overseas mission assignment in Central America, where she continued as a nurse, this time serving at a clinic in San Pedro Necta, a mountainous region of Guatemala. She then moved to Ilopango, San Salvador, where she was responsible for the formation of Basic Christian Communities for adults from 1969-1973.
Sister Teresa then returned to the Maryknoll Sisters Center in New York where she worked in Mission Education, speaking at local parishes and schools from 1974-1975. Afterwards, she returned to Guatemala to minister in San Pedro Sacatepequez in the formation of women on the diocesan level from 1976-1982, then undertook the same ministry in Santa Elena, El Peten, from 1982-1987. Sister Teresa then went to Guatemala City, where she worked with indigenous women and Christian Base Communities until 2004.
Later in 2004, Sister Teresa returned to the Maryknoll Sisters Center in Ossining, NY, this time doing data entry until her official retirement in 2007. She then moved to the Maryknoll Sisters Convent in Monrovia, CA, where she lived until returning, finally, to the Maryknoll Sisters Center in 2013.