Sr. Barbara Anne Hogan, fmm

      Sr. Barbara Anne Hogan, fmm, 81 of Our Lady of Hope Community, Brighton, MA, died on July 30, 2015 at Maristhill Nursing and Rehabilitation Center in Waltham, MA. Born in Woburn, MA on October 5, 1934, Sr. Barbara, was the daughter of the late Michael J. Hogan and Anne G. (O’Leary) Hogan.

       She entered the pre-novitiate of the Franciscan Missionaries of Mary on September 15, 1952 and made her first and final vows, March 19, 1955 and 1958. In 1959, Barbara received a diploma in nursing in Brighton, MA and while a student nurse, she cared for mentally challenged children at Kennedy Memorial Hospital (later this became Franciscan Hospital for Children).

      Sr. Barbara was missioned to Japan in June of 1962 and was assigned to a large Franciscan Missionary of Mary Hospital in Japan called Seibo (Blessed Mother) while she was studying Japanese. She was a clinic nurse there and while during her time in Japan, she made some family visits back to the USA and several renewal courses in France, India and Rome, her presence at Seibo Hospital was very consistent and she was actually in Japan approximately 52 years.

      Some years before returning to the United States for good, Sr. Barbara was assigned to work at the reception desk at Seibo Hospital where she was an interpreter for foreign patients.

      In 2011, Barbara was given an award from the Foundation for Encouragement of Social Contributions In Tokyo for her professional nursing at the hospital but also for volunteering in service to refugees and migrants, as an interpreter-clerk, helping to pay medical bills for indigent patients and even when necessary, making funeral arrangements for patients who passed away.

      Barbara was a good friend of Catherine Schultz, fmm, who was also missioned to Japan. Barbara and Catherine studied together in Kobe for the nurse’s exam which nurses needed in order to practice nursing in Japan. The exam was given in kanji (Japanese language characters) and was very difficult for foreigners, even for those who understood and spoke Japanese. They approached it together with hard work and prayer and both passed. Some years later, they were united again when Catherine was in a hospital in Totsuka suffering the effects of a bad accident. Barbara’s comforting presence was with Catherine when she died.

      Within the context of her nursing experiences and her whole life, Barbara could be described as gentle, humble, unassuming and kind. She was also someone who smiled and laughed easily, always able to appreciate a humorous situation or funny story. She was a skilled nurse who worked over 50 years mostly in Seibo Hospital where she was revered by foreign priests and missionary sisters as well as lay people who came there with medical needs or serious illnesses and, who appreciated her prayerful and encouraging bedside manner. Barbara must be present in the hearts and memories of many native Japanese and international people who experienced her gentle, Christ-like love, as well as everyone else who ever met or knew her.

       She is survived by her sister Grace Hogan who is in a nursing home in Massachusetts and a brother, Richard Hogan from Woburn, MA, and several nieces, nephews, grandnieces and grandnephews. Her brother, Daniel is deceased.

      She will be greatly missed by her family and devoted classmates from St. Charles High School in Woburn who have remained in close contact with her over the years.

      Her funeral will be held on Tuesday, August 3, 2015 at 11:00 am in Holy Family Chapel, 399 Fruit Hill Avenue, North Providence. Burial will follow in Holy Family Cemetery. Visiting hours will be from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. Monday, Aug 2, 2015 , with a Wake Service at 7 p.m. (www.boyleandsonfuneralhome.com)

 

Caterina Isonni, fmm (Giovita di Gesu)

                  Caterina Isonni, fmm
                 (Giovita di Gesu)
                       Born: July 19, 1923
                       Pre-novitiate: September 15, 1945
                       Novitiate: March 19, 1946
                       First Vows: March 19, 1948
                       Final Vows: March 19, 1951
                       Born to Eternal life: July 15, 2015
 
   EARLY LIFE
    Sister Caterina Isonni was born in Ossimo Inferiore in Brescia, Northern Ita-
    ly. She was one of five children – Dominic, who died as a baby, Francesco,
    Caterina, Edvige and Roberto. Her mother, Teresa Conti, was from Berga-
    mo, (home also of Pope John XXIII) and her father, Antonio, was from
    Brescia.
She attended school in the Village of Ossimo and after completing her stud-
ies there, attended High School in Milano with the Sisters of St. Dorothy
GOD’S CALL
At a very young age, Caterina felt a call to be a missionary, and the parish priest encouraged her and said that God
would help her when it was time. At a very young age also, Caterina joined a Catholic Action Group. As a young
teenager, she went to Castelnuovo to take a course that would qualify her to teach young girls who would be join-
ing the Catholic Action Group. Here, at Castelnuovo Caterina met the Franciscan Missionaries of Mary and, her call
to be a missionary so long ago, began to blossom once again. All this was happening to Caterina during a very
stressful time when Italy was suffering from the ravages of World War II.
MISSIONARY LIFE
Sister Caterina entered the Novitiate of the Franciscan Missionaries of Mary at Grottaferrata on Sept 15, 1945. She
made her first vows also at Grottaferrata on March 10, 1948. After this Sr. Caterina worked in the Infirmary and with
hospitality in St. Helene’s in Rome. Her final vows were made in 1951 after she was missioned to the United States.
Initially, Sister Caterina was chosen to go to our missions in China but because of political difficulties in that country,
this was not possible. In the U.S.A. Caterina was destined to care for the physically and mentally disabled children at
a new foundation. This foundation was then known as the Kennedy Memorial Hospital. It was originally conceived
and sponsored by Cardinal Cushing and staffed by the Franciscan Missionaries of Mary. Today it is known as the
Franciscan Children’s Hospital.
Sister remained at Kennedy for twenty-three years as the Supervisor for a group of boys for whom she cared with
skill and understanding. She also contributed her natural expertise to overseeing the House Keeping and Laundry
Services. Of this part of her missionary experience, Sister Caterina says, “You had to be a Mother to the children – to
understand as much as possible their needs and to assist them in their difficulties.” Also, the parents needed to be
helped in dealing with the limitations and emotional needs of their son or daughter.
In 1971 Sister Caterina was missioned to Divine Providence Shelter in New York City where she continued to use her
special gifts. Here, she was the supervisor of a group of boys who had been taken from difficult home situations.
She remained in New York City five years and was then missioned to Cardinal Hayes Home for Children in
Millbrook, N.Y. Here again, she was the supervisor of a group of boys from difficult situations, and some with mi-
nor medical problems. She was at Cardinal Hayes Home for twenty-nine years. During her latter yeas there she
contributed to the ambiance of the Home by decorating the halls and special rooms for the different holidays and
seasons of the year. Outside she cared for the gardens with special care. Caterina said “As children we were always
taught to respect nature and all kinds of plants. They give us nourishment and bring beauty into our surroundings.
In 2005, Sister Caterina was missioned to Queen of Peace Community at Fruit Hill, North Providence and brought
her cheerful and kind ways to the Day Services for the Elderly until her health no longer permitted this. She re-
mained at the Fruit Hill Assisted Living Facility as long as possible but then, due to continued failing health, she was
missioned to St. Antoine Residence, where she ministered to staff and residents by her beautiful smile and gentle,
loving ways. These were her gifts to all she served in her ministries throughout her life. Sister Caterina was often at
prayer and at other times could be seen in her room reading a copy of  Birds and Blooms  magazine, keeping true to
her keen interest in nature. It could be said that Caterina loved all of God’s creatures and they all loved her back.
 

Herminia Coquia, fmm

Herminia Coquia, fmm             

              I came  across a small ID card that listed Sr. Herminia’s height as 4’ 6” tall. The saying “Good things or, let us say, good people come in small packages” certainly applies to Herminia. I found a letter in her file that she had written to the US Provincial on June 7, 1949, just six days before her final vows ceremony. She wrote, “…There is never a day, which I always hoped and prayed for, as this coming day of final profession. I have always realized the sublimity of our vocation, dear Mother, together with the wondrous privileges and graces entailed in it and I do plead God daily for final perseverance not only for myself but for each and every one of us. …” Our little sister was in love with her God and in love with her Franciscan Missionary of Mary vocation. These words of our foundress, Blessed Mary of the Passion resonate with Herminia’s words: “Jesus is generous. He has given Himself to us. Let us not think that it is too much to give ourselves entirely to Him, with all we possess, it is only a hundredth part of what He has given us. (First Conference of a Triduum on Love, Feb., 1902) Herminia’s first mission was to India. On October 30, 1949 in her letter to the Provincial she wrote, “Yes, dear Mother, the hand of Almighty God is beckoning me to far away India – my future land of destination and I may also add here, my future place of my soul’s sanctification.” From India where Herminia had been teaching, she went to Sri Lanka where she taught in high school. She was then missioned to Liberia where she taught in St. Theresa Convent School for nearly eight years before being missioned to Ghana. Here she was, as always, short in stature, but she was high in achievements. Herminia was asked to open a new girls’ high school, the first of its kind in the Upper West Region. “Open the school” meant she had to first build it. Herminia always said she began with nothing – not even a penny!!! Once again this little sister had a big challenge which she faced head-on, and was successful in building the school. She was the first headmistress 9   of St. Francis Girls Secondary School in Jirapa, Ghana. She had the joy of seeing one of her first students eventually become headmistress. Under Herminia’s direction the school grew and today it is known throughout Ghana for its excellence in educating women. Yes, good people do come in small packages!!! There are many other stories about Herminia’s wonderful work and accomplishments but she did not focus on her own achievements but rather on those of others who were her students. She once wrote, “A teacher’s responsibility in the molding of souls for God is indeed great and I am fully aware of this truth, for souls depend upon the laborious efforts a teacher puts into her work. May the Good God give me the necessary graces to educate and enable the ideals of my future students so as to make them fit courtiers for the Kingdom of God by leading them by word and far more by example, to Him who gave us life. With unflinching fidelity I shall try to accomplish all tasks of my daily duties.” Yes, good people do come in small packages. Herminia returned to the US Province after thirty-four years of overseas missionary life—to continue her missionary life here in the US until illness in 1999 curtailed her very active life. Her graciousness, gentleness, love, care and concern for others did not stop. She was always ready to listen, to pray for and to be with others. I think she was somewhat famous or perhaps infamous at Saint Antoine Residence for her seemingly never ending delicious treats that she offered to staff and residents. Yes, good people do come in small packages. In one of her conferences Blessed Mary of the Passion wrote, “I should like you to take away with you from this conference such a constant recollection of this first glance of Jesus, that it would maintain you in that state of complete readiness for death, which will enable you to say, ‘How happy shall I be when I have breathed my last sigh, when no longer hampered by this mortal body, I shall meet that first glance of Jesus and shall hear him say to me, ‘Come My dove, the winter is passed. Come with me to Paradise.’ “ (Rome, 9 February, 1903) God will be smiling because good people do come in little packages and this good person might just have a little package overflowing with goodies for all. Dear Herminia, may you rest in peace. Lois Pereira, fmm

 

 

Sr. Margaret Isabel Haydon, FMM

 

 

     

  

Sr.  Margaret entered the Franciscan Missionaries of Mary at North Providence, RI, June 13, 1937.  She made her first profession December 15, 1937 and her final profession December 15, 1942.   

She began nursing studies in 1940 at St. Anne’s School of Nursing, Fall River, MA.  After obtaining her license as a registered nurse, she was sent in mission to Cardinal Hayes Home for Children in Millbrook, NY  as the nurse for the home.    Her next mission was to McMahon Child Care Home where once again she served as the nurse.  She alternated amongst the four Franciscan Missionaries of Mary Child care facilities of Cardinal Hayes Home for Children, McMahon Child Care Home, Divine Providence Child Care Home, Manhattan, NY and St. Francis Sanatorium in Roslyn, NY which was devoted to the care of children with rheumatic fever.  She had done a course in Pediatrics, which gave her expertise in caring for children.  

In 1957, she was sent in mission to Holy Family Community and Novitiate where she served as the nurse for sisters in the infirmary, sisters in the community and the novitiate.  She was an excellent, clinical nurse. 

December 1965, she was sent in mission to Cuatitlan, Mexico and subsequently to other communities in Union Hidalgo, Motozintla Chiapas. Michoacán San Pedro, Leon Rancho Alvernia, and Honduras Siltepec Chiapas serving always as a nurse.  She was fluent in both Spanish and the dialect of Zapoteco. 

The people for whom Sr.Margaret cared referred to her as Sister Doctor she was that knowledgeable and skilled.  

Upon her return to the USA, her ministries were in Pastoral care in Divine Providence, Manhattan, NY. St. Francis Hospital, Roslyn, NY and in Roger Williams Hospital, Providence. 

She had a sabbatical year in Israel and did Scripture Studies at Providence College. 

 Throughout her life, she remained a strong, vigorous, hard working person with a sense of humor.   

She is survived by her nephew, Damien Haydon of  Ramsey  N.J.   

 

Visiting hours will be from 4 to 8 p.m. Monday, Mar. 30, 2015, with a Wake Service at 7 p.m. in Holy Family Chapel, Fruit Hill Avenue, North Providence; Funeral Mass  at Holy Family, Tuesday, March 31 at  11:15 a.m.  Funeral arrangements by Russell J. Boyle and Son. 

Sr. Gilberte M. Belhumeur, fmm

Early Years                      
Born in Providence, Rhode Island, Sr. Gilberte felt the first stirrings of her missionary vocation at 11 years. She was in a church where a missionary from Africa was speaking. He told the congregation about the African people andtheir needs, and spoke about the sad faces of the chi1dren. Gilberte made an inner promise that very moment to go to Africa to get the African children to smile.

God’s Call
Since a promise was always very important for Gilberte, she thought seriously of religious life as a young
woman, and then, in 1941, followed her sister Annette into the only missionary order she knew.
Believing that to enter in Canada, away from her hometown Providence, would be better for her
perseverance, Gilberte went to Quebec and spent her novitiate there during the war years.
Missionary Life
Grand Allee, Quebec had a large printing press and Sr. Gilberte served there running the printing machines
for ten years. Because the French Province needed her skills for their printing press in Vanves, Sr. Gilberte
was missioned there and worked the presses for twenty years. Sr. Gilberte believed that her dream of
going to Africa was fulfilled in this very indirect way because of her part in the written word coming from
and going to Africa and many other parts of the world.

In 1971, Sr. Gilberte was missioned to Holy Family Community in North Providence. Because of her
mother’s advanced age and failing health, Gilberte received permission to be, as she described, ”a
presence in the house” to help her mother to be independent and to take care of herself. This Gilberte
did for twelve years. After her mother’s death, Gilberte was missioned to St. Francis Community in
Roslyn, NY, for a short time and then missioned to the Infirmary at Fruit Hill where she assisted in caring
for the sisters’ many practical and pastoral needs. Many who have experienced Gilberte describe her as a
”gentle breeze – a quiet, devoted presence – one who works faithfully without complaint.” Even though
she never went to Africa to make the children smile, Gilberte felt that there were many little ways in which she was able make our sick and elderly sisters smile. Gilbert’s large, loving family kept in contact with her over the years and visited her often.

Most of her life, Gilberte walked to every place she needed to go. Even after many years, when she was
able, Gilberte liked to take long walks. She believed that as a religious it was important to be a presence
in the world. Her prayer life and adoration were precious to her and she hoped that religion would
become more and more important to people in their everyday lives, not just in crisis situations.
Gilberte remembered stories of men in the trenches during war battles, crying out to God. If only they
could have this same thirst for and realization of God in other situations as well, she felt, then the Church
would be more important and alive to people. This inspiration became an intention in her daily prayer,
and we can believe that she will continue to pray this prayer now that she has gone home to God. 

Sr. Mary Catherine Beadreau, fmm (M Alodia of the Infants Jesus)

Sr. Mary Catherine Beadreau, fmm (M Alodia of the Infants Jesus)
 

    Born: November 13, 1927
    
Pre-Novitiate: December 12, 1945
    Novitiate: June 13, 1946
    First Vows: June 13, 1948
    Final Vows: June 13, 1951
    Born to Eternal Life: December 5, 2014                           

 

Early Years

Sr. Mary Catherine (Cathy) Boudreaux was born November 13, 1927 in Salt Lake City, Utah, the fifth of
six children born to Frank and Frieda Boudreau. She was brought up in the deserts and mountains of
southern Nevada, where the family was often without priest and sacraments for long periods of time. She
attended public schools for eleven years; her twelfth year was finally in a Catholic boarding school in
California.
God’s Call
It was there that she became attracted to the Franciscan spirit and made her final decision to enter
religious life. Cathy was looking for three things before making her choice of a religious community:
Franciscan, missionary and the care of lepers. At that time a magazine of the Propagation of the Faith
came into her hands for Australia to begin a leper hospital.
She set out to travel to Holy Family Novitiate in North Providence, RI. She arrived at the door of the
convent at midnight. Although she had never met an FMM and all contact was done by correspondence,
she was determined that she was there to stay.
Missionary life
Cathy made her first vows in June 1948 and was sent to Orient Heights in East Boston, becoming one of
the original group who closed that house and opened the then Kennedy Memorial Hospital in 1949. She
made her final vows in 1951 and continued to work at KMH, now known as Franciscan Hospital for
Children, with mentally and physically handicapped children until September 1952 when she began
studies at St. Elizabeth’s Hospital School of Nursing.
She graduated in 1955 and immediately began studies at Boston College, graduating in 1958. She was
then sent to St. Francis Hospital in Roslyn as Director of Nursing. She spent eleven years at St. Francis
Hospital until the long awaited day of her being sent in mission to Indonesia in 1969. Cathy spent
sixteen years in Indonesia, fourteen of which were on her beloved Island of Flores. She visited and cared
for the sick in their village homes.
Cathy was sent to the United States in 1986 to help care for her mother.
During that time her visa for Indonesia expired and she was not able to obtain a renewal.
She was missioned to Holy Family community in North Providence, RI. where she helped in the care of
our elderly sisters. After two years she was missioned to Hazlehurst, GA, working as a transcriptionist in
the clinic.
Her next mission was to St. Bonaventure Indian Mission in Thoreau, NM. where she was involved with
the Montessori Program. Then she was sent in mission to Oakland/San Francisco in a ministry serving the
Catholic Indonesian Community in that area. She served eight years in that ministry until declining health
required her being sent in mission to the Franciscan Missionaries of Mary Assisted Living Residence in
North Providence, RI and finally to St. Antoine’s Residence for further health care.
In one of her last writings she wrote:
“Community life, active participation in it, … are very important to me.” She gave priority to the family
spirit which she said had always attracted her so much in the Institute – “sharing joys, sorrows, and hopes
with one another, even though oceans may separate us.”