Sr. Mary T. Plante FMM
(April 16, 1931 – December 6, 2017)
Sr. Mary Theresa Plante, 86, Franciscan Missionary of Mary, Ein Karim Community, died Wednesday, December 6, 2017 at St. Antoine Residence, North Smithfield, RI.
Sr. Mary Theresa was born in Kalamazoo, Michigan, April 16, 1931. She entered the Franciscan Missionaries of Mary on September 17, 1948 in North Providence, RI. Her first vows were pronounced in March, 1951 and final vows in March, 1957.
Before her final vows, Mary was missioned to Kennedy Memorial Hospital in Brighton, MA which is now known as Franciscan Hospital for Children where she was a supervisor for children from 1951 to 1952. Other missions were to Cardinal Hayes Home for Children in Millbrook, NY until 1958 and back to Kennedy where she worked in the laboratory as well as to Fruit Hill in N. Providence, RI where she worked in the printing press.
Mary Theresa was then missioned to Roslyn, NY where she studied at St. John’s University from 1964-68, graduating with a BS degree in Medical Technology. After an internship at St. Vincent’s Hospital for a year, she became Administrative technologist in the laboratory at Kennedy Hospital from 1968-1980.
After a sabbatical year in Rome and parts of Europe, Mary Theresa was missioned to San Francisco where she worked at Lincoln Medical Center doing clinical lab work from 1981-1985. Returning to New York, she did computer work for a Drug and Alcohol Rehab Organization through 1988.
In 1989 she became the first representative of Franciscans International, a non-Governmental Organization (NGO) at the United Nations, a position which lasted officially until 2011. Mary Theresa still continued to consult with the Franciscan group. During this time she also held the position of Justice and Peace Coordinator for the Franciscan Missionaries of Mary.
Since Franciscans live and work throughout the world, they had firsthand experience of the issues being discussed at the UN like the rights of children, poverty, peace, religious freedom and social issues of every kind. Franciscans International was an attempt to bring the whole Franciscan Family together on peace and justice issues. With her deep and intelligent comments, Mary Theresa made many statements to the governments dealing with these issues, connecting all the concerns on the internet. The JPIC work began with the FMM who made a big contribution to the work at the UN. Mary Theresa used her many gifts to accomplish as much as she could, even when her health was failing. She was a true missionary of peace and justice in today’s world.
Visiting hours will be on Wednesday, December 13, from 4 to 8 PM with the wake service at 7 PM in Holy Family Chapel, 399 Fruit Hill Ave. North Providence and a Funeral Mass at Holy Family Chapel at 11 AM on Thursday, December 14. Burial will be in the Holy Family Cemetery. Arrangements by Russell J. Boyle & Son.