Sister Eileen Mary Mortimer, S.S.J., (formerly Sister Catherine Jose) died March 15 in Chestnut Hill Hospital in Philadelphia. She was 76 and in her 60th year of religious life.
Born in Philadelphia on March 21, 1939, Sister Eileen was the daughter of Thomas Mortimer and Catherine Owens. She attended Epiphany of Our Lord School and John W. Hallahan Catholic Girls’ High School.
She entered the Congregation of the Sisters of St. Joseph on Sept. 12, 1956 and professed final vows on Aug. 10, 1964.
Sister Eileen earned a B.S. in education from Chestnut Hill College and an M.A. from Washington Montessori Institute. As a teacher she taught in schools of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia including St. Anne, St. John Chrysostom, St. Michael, Presentation, Norwood Academy (Montessori), St. Francis of Assisi and Assumption Hall (Montessori). In the Diocese of Allentown she taught at St. Patrick School in Pottsville, Pa.
She served St. John Chrysostom Parish, Wallingford, for nearly 50 years. Sister Eileen established the Montessori program school for the parish and brought her unique spirit and charisma to faith formation, the bereavement ministry, her beloved homebound parishioners and countless other pastoral services.
A doting aunt and master storyteller, Sister Eileen was the ultimate people person. Whether printing out jokes for the Widows Group or regaling a crowd at a party, she embraced parish life with joy and enthusiasm.
In 2014 Sister Eileen continued her ministry of prayer and presence at St. Joseph Villa, Flourtown.
The funeral Mass was celebrated March 21 at St. Joseph Villa.
Sister Eileen is survived by her brothers Joseph (Elizabeth) and Thomas (Sandra) and her sisters Anne Marie O’Brien (John) and Kathleen Hall. She is also survived by nieces and nephews, and members of her congregation.