Sister Francis Ann Mulligan, MM

Born: March 3, 1916
Entered: December 8, 1938
Died: May 3, 2006

We remember our Sister Francis Ann Mulligan for her joyful and self-giving spirit. We celebrate today her entrance into New Life and we give thanks for her life among us here at Maryknoll, in the  Philippines, in Monrovia, California, as well as her Prayer Ministry for the Peru/Ecuador Region. Sister Francis Ann passed away, accompanied by our Nursing Staff, on May 3, 2006 at about 1:00 p.m., in the Maryknoll Residential Care IV. She was 90 years of age and had been a Maryknoll Sister for 67 years.

Lucille Marie Mulligan was born on March 3, 1916, in Jersey City, New Jersey. She was the daughter of Daniel J. Mulligan and Mary Brennan Mulligan and was one of seven children, two sisters and four brothers. One of her brothers was Maryknoll priest Father Francis Mulligan.

Lucille Marie attended St. John’s Grammar School and graduated from Dickinson High School in 1932. Since it was during the Depression years, she worked in a hospital as a practical nurse to assist the family. During that time she came to Maryknoll every month to visit her brother Francis. She, too, felt that God was calling her to Maryknoll. Lucille Marie entered Maryknoll on December 8, 1938 from St. John the Baptist Parish in Jersey City, New Jersey. At Reception she received the name Sister Francis Ann. On June 30, 1941 she made her First Profession of Vows at Maryknoll, NY. and Final Profession of Vows on June 30, 1944, in Monrovia, CA.

Sister Francis Ann’s desire to serve wherever she was needed had her assigned to the Maryknoll TB Hospital in Monrovia, California from 1943 to 1946 and then to the Maryknoll Junior Seminary in Los Altos, CA. In 1947, she went to San Juan Bautista in CA where she ministered to the Hispanics. Sister returned to Maryknoll in 1949 and served both in the Congregation and Society’s offices. In 1957, she attended Maryknoll Teachers College and received a Bachelor’s Degree in Education in 1961.

That same year she was assigned to the Philippines where she taught Religion, English and Mathematics at Maryknoll High School in Davao until 1964. Later she taught in other Maryknoll High Schools in Santiago, Pakil and Malabon until 1973 and during this time also serving on the Regional Governance Board. In 1974, Sister Francis Ann was asked to be Administrator of SOS Children’s Village in Lipa, City. She said of those years with the children, “The work is both challenge and fulfillment. It is work to provide a home atmosphere where orphaned youngsters can grow up in love and security, but I find it one of the most satisfying jobs I’ve had since coming to the Philippines.” In 1977, she completed two quarters of Clinical-Pastoral studies at St. Luke’s Hospital in Manila, and worked as Chaplain at Polymedic Hospital in Manila where she remained until 1978.

Reflecting on her years of experience in the Philippines she said that the Church in the Philippines had enriched her understanding of Christian Community. She had great praise and love for the Filipino people, with whom she shared life and ministry.

Sister Francis Ann returned to Maryknoll in 1978 and gave service in the Mission Awareness Program and the Communications Office. From 1979 to 1981, she was involved in family ministry caring for her sisters and brothers who were quite ill. Then in 1981 to 1984, while she continued caring for her family, she also did Congregational Service in Maryknoll Residential Care helping with arts and crafts. She was also Coordinator and Cook at Watch Hill in the summers during those years.

Because she wanted to be near her family, Sister Francis Ann was assigned to the Maryknoll Center in 1987. Always wanting to be of service and because of her adaptable disposition, Sister was assigned to different positions; Co-Sacristan, Center Council (driving, hostessing, planning parties), direct mail and leisure time activities for our elderly and disabled Sisters. In 2002, she retired to the Center—Main House Community, but due to ill health she was admitted to our Maryknoll Residential Care IV in 2003.

We remember Sister Francis Ann as a person of deep faith, with a childlike trust in God. She was compassionate and caring, generous and wholehearted. She had a happy and lovable disposition, that even in serious moments you could see the twinkle in her eyes and her big smile. Sister had a great sense of humor and could always see the funny and light side of things. She enjoyed life and lived it to the full. And so we celebrate today with Sister Francis Ann her fullness of New Life with the God she loved and served so faithfully.

We are grateful to Maryknoll Residential Care Staff for their loving and gentle care of our Sister Francis Ann.

We welcome and offer our condolences to her family. We extend a welcome to our Maryknoll Father Earnest Lukaschek, who will preside at this Liturgy of Christian Burial.