Sister Jacinta Conlon, M.M.S., a Medical Mission Sister and St. John, New Brunswick, native, died June 9 as a result of Covid-19. She was 97 years old.
Sister Jacinta graduated from Moncton High School then earned her RN at St. Michael’s Hospital in Toronto in 1956. She entered the Medical Mission Sisters (MMS) in 1958 and moved to Mandar, India for her first mission assignment. She worked as a nurse-midwife and staff nurse for 13 years in MMS’s Holy Family Hospitals in Mandar, Bombay and New Delhi.
In 1976 Sister Jacinta returned to Canada and worked with the elderly at St. Patrick’s Home in Ottawa and Grey Nuns Nursing Home in Ontario. She then moved to Rome to care for her order’s foundress, Mother Anna Dengel, for the last year of her life, treasuring this time with Mother Dengel.
After Anna Dengel passed away, Sister Jacinta earned a certificate in gerontology from St. Mary of the Woods in Terre Haute, Ind. and spent the rest of her professional life caring for the elderly as a nurse, respite provider and in hospice support.
She lived and worked in Florida from 1986-2008 before retiring to the MMS headquarters in Philadelphia at the age of 85. She volunteered in the Mission Development Center until 2019, delighting the staff with her quick wit and stories from her time in the missions.
Family was very important to Sister Jacinta; she thoroughly enjoyed the updates from her nieces and nephews and their children.
Having coped with debilitating arthritis, COPD and severe hearing loss over many years, Sister Jacinta was a strong woman. Though her hearing loss was profound she taught herself to read lips well. She was fiercely independent with a clear mind on how she liked things; she was funny and optimistic, compassionate and dedicated.
Her private burial was held June 17 at her community’s North American Headquarters in Philadelphia.
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