Entered Life: May 1, 1929
Entered Religious Life: September 8, 1947
Entered Eternal Life: February 27, 2019
May She Rest In Peace
We hear the words of John…
“so that my joy might be in you and your joy might be complete…”
Mary certainly had God’s joy in her – she is probably happy we are here celebrating her life on Mardi Gras and in the month of March. Today she would be wearing Irish shirt # 5!!! No reason for a celebration escaped her. It didn’t matter what others thought and usually her enthusiasm won over the naysayers. After trying to discourage her a few times I was one of her converts and readily joined in.
Her joy was not just personal, just for herself. She worked to share and create joy. I am told that many a birthday party for a niece or nephew was orchestrated by Aunt Mary. I did not live with Mary until I moved to Wheaton and there I saw her try to make Wheaton a welcoming place where people were happy to come and be together. There was always an invitation for dinner to our local Sisters. As we heard from many today this was in her DNA – celebrate – be joyful. And it was always followed by what can I do to help? Closing Wheaton was very difficult for her but she didn’t dig in her heels but rather sought out the positive aspects – what could be celebrated.
At the Casa when she would receive treats they would be shared with the rest of us. At 7 pm (after wheel) she would divide the items up and deliver a plate to each “shelf” which required a good bit of walking. Every holiday, community memorial, etc we would each receive a little treat. She never expected a return. It was the giving that was important to her.
She always sold herself short when it came to spirituality. She would say that she didn’t pray as much as others. She was not the “holy nun”. She wasn’t into social justice like some. It was difficult to convince her that a life lived for others is a prayer in itself. To show her that all she did for the poor children and families at St. Bernard’s and St. Adrian’s was social justice before it was called that. It was just second nature to her to care for people. Her enthusiasm for a party and her fun-loving nature could be misleading for some. Unless you had the opportunity to know her well it could hide the depth of her feelings and spirituality.
Her friends and friends’ families readily turned to her to be on the famous prayer list. Her compassion for the sick and suffering was well known and she followed up on their requests. But she also had a list for the happy occasions. Until recently there were very few birthdays,
anniversaries, etc. that were not remembered. One of her current regrets was that she was forgetting birthdays.
I have to add that she would be most joyful that her Tom (Tom McCarthy, OSA) is here to preside for this occasion. We are grateful that his schedule allows his presence but I am sure we all know who arranged that. If I had the opportunity to ask for her thoughts on this reflection her only advice would be “make it short”.
There are some of the famous sweatshirts on the table downstairs. Please take any you might like in her memory. Also pictures…
Her good friend Maureen made sure that as always Mary would have something to give – so take a chocolate in her honor.
Rosemary Lynch, IBVM