Rita Marie McCormack, CSJ

We remember her in the blowing of the wind and the chill of winter

August 1, 1924 – January 24, 2021

Welcome to her many nieces and nephews, and grands whom she loved dearly.

Sister Rita McCormack, formerly Sister Mary Kieran, was the devoted daughter of Thomas Edward and Mary Agnes McCormack.  She grew up in Winchester, with her eight brothers, John, Thomas, Charles, Henry, George, Fred, Richard and Robert and her sister, Mary.  When she was 18, she entered the Sisters of St. Joseph, nearly 75 years ago. The love that Rita grew up with, in the “community” of her large family nurtured in her a love for “community life,” which she nurtured, valued and witnessed to so well. Though I imagine she was adored by her brothers, we CSJs know well how cherished she was by her sister Mary. Rita was the longed for baby sister and they were devoted to each other in life and beyond.

 Rita was missioned as a teacher at Sacred Heart in West Lynn, St. Anthony School in Allston, the Boston School for the Deaf, Randolph, Aquinas College Milton and Fontbonne Academy Milton. Later she ministered at the Center for Religious Development, Cambridge and in Spiritual ministries at Cohasset, Framingham and Holy Family, Rockland. She also spent two summers in New Mexico educating about the needs of the deaf community.

 A word that comes to mind to describe Rita is open. She was open to deepening her faith and broadening her understanding of the expansiveness of God’s presence in others and in the world around her. She was committed to exploring the religious education needs of the deaf community, and was a spiritual mentor to many along the way. In addition to being dedicated to her ministries and her ongoing development, Rita was a joyful witness to our way of life. She thrived in her community life and nurtured it for others. Sharing prayer with others, the essence of our life, was a gift she gave and relied on. Her faith, her love for community life, and her love of service attracted others to her and to our life.

 During her last days of life, Rita asked me to pray with her the words of the philosopher Teilhard de Chardin, that she would be totally surrendered to God, trusting that death is the necessary passage toward total union with God.

 Her prayer has been fulfilled.  May we trust in her peace, as we cherish her memory.

 Given by Betsy Conway, CSJ