Hermana María Rests in Her Lord

Sister MariaIt was in the early morning of Wednesday, April 25th that our Sister María, the name with which she identified as a result of her Chilean/Peruvian connection that were part and parcel of her life for so many years, accepted her Lord's invitation to eternal life.

Sister was baptized Pauline Leona by her proud parents soon after her birth in Pittsfield, MA in 1930. Her attraction to the DHS grew with the years, and she entered the Congregation after completing high school and professed her first vows in St. Brieuc, France at the Mother House of the Daughters of the Holy Spirit in August of 1951.

Upon returning to the USA soon thereafter, the young professed Sr. Marie Wilfred, responded to the call of serving as an educator at the elementary school level in Massachusetts and Vermont. She loved the classroom and the little ones. Her keen sense of humor and her small stature endeared her immediately to students and parents alike.  However, there was a sense of adventure hidden away in Sister's heart and when the US Province sent their first missionaries to Chile, South America in 1962, Marie stood in line eagerly awaiting this new experience.

It was not long before Marie became known as María and she became one in heart, mind and love with the Chileans and Peruvians. The Latino culture fit her personality to a tee and her hard work as teacher, administrator and pastoral worker in these missions turned to acts of cariño and true love.

She was asked to interrupt her labors in South America to return to France in service to the Congregation as a General Councillor. But three years later, her heart still drawn to her Latin families, she returned to minister among them until her health decreed her coming home to the USA in 2008.  In 2010 a frail 'María' retired to the Holy Spirit Health Care Center at the Provincial House in Putnam. She transferred in the summer of 2016 to our newly formed DHS St. Joseph Community in Windham, CT where su Señor came peacefully and calmly to summon her home forever.

Sister leaves one brother, Marcel, of Pittsfield, MA, a number of nieces and nephews and her DHS Spiritual Family with many fond memories and a strong sense of hope, appreciation and respect for the peoples of Chile and Perú.

Famiy and friends witll gather at the Provincial House in Putnam to celebrate María's life on Friday, April 27th  from  6 – 8 p.m. with a prayer service at 7:15.  Her funeral mass will be the following day at 11:30 a.m. also at the Provincial House. She will be interred in the DHS section of St. Mary of the Visitation Cemetery on Providence Street in Putnam.

Memorial gifts may be offered for the DHS Retirement Fund and sent to the Development Office at 72 Church St. 06260.

El Señor te tiene en sus brazos, María.  Descansa en paz y tranquilidad.



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