Biographies

Sister Mary John Cahill, MM

Born: September 30, 1878
Entered: February 12, 1918
Died: September 25, 1961

This evening about 8 o’clock, our dear Sister Mary John passed away, as sweetly and as quietly as she had lived.

Sister Mary John (Mary Ellen Cahill) was born in Norristown, Pennsylvania, September 30, 1878. Sister graduated from St. Patrick’s Parochial School in Norristown and worked as a milliner and a bookkeeper until she entered Maryknoll, as one of the pioneer members, on February 12, 1918. Sister received the Habit the same year, on August 15, and made her first Profession, February 15, 1921.

The next three years Sister spent at the Seattle Mission, in the apostolate to the Japanese. Sister returned to the Motherhouse in August 1924 and during the next years her efforts were devoted to promotion work during which time she made many friends for the missions.

From 1931 until 1948, Sister Mary John helped in the sewing room at the Motherhouse. Sister was a skilled seamstress, and was always the quintescence of generosity with her time and skills.

From 1948 to 1953, Sister Mary John was Assistant Superior at Crichton House and in charge of the sewing room there.

For many years Sister suffered from a chronic illness.  The illness became acute necessitating an assignment to the Motherhouse infirmary in 1953, where Sister remained until 1957 when the infirmary was transferred to Bethany.

Although Sister Mary John was in constant pain, her spirit never flagged. She was always cheerful and interested in others. She delighted in hearing the returned missioners tell of their work and experience, and Sister realized the importance of an apostolate of suffering in winning needed graces for souls. She accepted her role with loving zeal.

Charity and gratitude were two of the beautiful virtues which Sister Mary John exemplified in a marked degree. Sister expressed appreciation always for the smallest service, and her own Christ-like charity reflected a similar glow on all who came in contact with Sister, so that she could truly see only good in everyone.

We shall all miss Sister’s beautiful example as we rejoice with her that she is now with her beloved Spouse whom she served with such unfailing loving devotion during the eighty—three years of her life.

We remind you of our suffrages for Sister Mary John – Chapter XVII of our Constitutions, as we commend her dear soul to God. The funeral will take place at Bethany on Thursday morning – September 28.