Sister Ellen McCarthy died at Saint Joseph Villa on September 9, 2023. She was born July 16, 1930, to Thomas and Ellen Cullinane, Irish-bred parents who named their daughter Ellen Teresa. From her prayerful mother, Ellen learned a deep spirituality which nurtured her life. Her encounter with sisters during her education at Saint Mary Star of the Sea School in Bayonne, the city of her heart, sparked her initial desire to embrace religious life. She graduated from Bayonne High School, worked for a year and entered the Congregation of the Sisters of Saint Joseph in September, 1950. In March, 1951 Ellen received the habit and was named Sister Thomas Maureen. On August 8, 1958, she made her final profession of vows.
Sister’s primary-grade teaching career of more than forty years spanned a broad spectrum of schools in the archdioceses of Newark and Philadelphia. Sister Thomas Maureen taught her students with very unselfish love which expects no reward for its services and at nothing other than helping him or her and being at the same time pleasing to God. – Maxim 55
Beyond the happiness she experienced in teaching God’s little ones, Sister Ellen relied on grace to nurture and foster a deep, personal relationship with God whom she called her Divine Lover. Spiritual direction enabled her to experience God’s unconditional, everlasting love, fostering a heartfelt response to Jesus Christ, attentiveness to the will of God and fidelity to the life of the Spirit. – Constitutions 39
We celebrate Sister Ellen’s graced transformation over seventy-three years of vowed commitment, and her joyful call to eternal life with her Divine Lover.