The Sisters of St. Francis of Philadelphia 2023 Jubilee Celebration was held the weekend of June 3-4. Jubilarians celebrating 50 and 70 years of religious profession gathered at Our Lady of Angels Convent in Aston, Pa., for a weekend recalling memories and celebrating both the years past and the years to come.
On Saturday afternoon, congregational leadership hosted a special dinner for all the jubilarians at Assisi House, the retirement residence in Aston. On Sunday morning both jubilarians and guests gathered in Our Lady of Angels Chapel for a special liturgy. Father Cyprian Rosen, OFM Cap., presided, and during the liturgy jubilarians renewed their vows of chastity, poverty, and obedience—vows which they first professed 70 or 50 years ago. Following the liturgy both jubilarians and their guests gathered for a luncheon at Our Lady of Angels Convent.
Collectively the nine jubilarians represent 610 years of service in 15 dioceses throughout the United States.
- Currently Residing and/or Ministering in the Diocese of Wilmington
One of this year’s jubilarians currently lives and ministers in the Diocese of Wilmington. Sister Mary Dawson Smith, OSF, a golden jubilarian celebrating 50 years of religious profession, lives in the diocese and serves as the school counselor at St. Ann School in Wilmington. Previous ministry in the diocese includes teaching at Padua Academy and St. Mark’s High School. She has also served as a family counselor at Catholic Charities and at Our Lady of Fatima Parish.
- Previously Ministered in the Diocese of Wilmington
Six of this year’s diamond jubilarians celebrating 70 years of religious profession ministered previously in the Diocese of Wilmington.
Sister Ann McFadden, OSF, (formerly Sister Thomas Mary) is a diamond jubilarian celebrating 70 years of religious profession and a native of Wilmington, Del. Sister Ann attended St. Thomas Parish in Wilmington when she entered the community. Sister Ann’s previous ministries in the diocese included teaching at St. Mark’s High School in Newark, Immaculate Conception School in Elkton, and at St. John the Beloved School in Wilmington. She also served as a therapist/counselor at the Center for Pastoral Care in Greenville, the Glass House in Delaware City, and Psychotherapeutic Services in Wilmington. Later she served as a volunteer at both St. Elizabeth Parish and Corpus Christi Parish. Currently Sister Ann serves in prayer and hospitality ministry at Assisi House, the congregation’s retirement residence in Aston, Pennsylvania.
Sister Marietta Culhane, OSF, is a diamond jubilarian celebrating 70 years of religious profession. Sister Marietta’s previous ministry in the diocese was serving in local house ministry at her convent in Claymont. Currently Sister Marietta serves as a volunteer at Assisi House.
Sister Eileen Hennessy, OSF, (formerly Sister Felicine Marie) currently serves in the health office at Our Lady of Angels Convent in Aston, Pennsylvania. Her previous ministry in the Diocese of Wilmington includes serving as the radiology supervisor at St. Francis Hospital in Wilmington.
Sister Leonora Juliani, OSF, (formerly Sister Marie Rita) served as a teacher at Immaculate Conception School in Elkton, as well as at St. Paul School and St. Anthony School both in Wilmington. She also worked as a librarian at Corpus Christi School. Currently she ministers in prayer and hospitality at Assisi House.
Sister Marie Michelle Michel, OSF, also ministers in prayer and hospitality at Assisi House. She ministered for many years in the business office at St. Francis Hospital in Wilmington, in the parish office at St. Anthony Parish in Wilmington, and in the provincial office for the congregation in Havre de Grace, Maryland.
Sister Nuala Kathleen Swan, OSF, (formerly Sister Fintan), taught at St. Ann School and St. Joseph on the Brandywine School in Wilmington, as well as at Immaculate Conception School in Elkton, Md. Currently she serves as a volunteer at Assisi House, as well as at Anna’s Place in Chester.