Obituaries, Week of Jan. 15, 2022

Sister Mary Margaret Daly, CSJ, (Sister Helen Marie) entered into eternal life on December 17, at age 97, while residing at Maria Regina Residence in Brentwood. She was a sister of Saint Joseph for almost 80 years. She graduated from Our Lady of Victory School in Floral Park and The Mary Louis Academy.

Sister Mary Margaret Daly, CSJ

Sister Mary’s teaching ministry began at Saint Brendan’s and continued at Saint James, Saint Francis of Assisi, Saint Stanislaus (Maspeth), and Saint Frances de Chantal (Wantagh). She earned a BA from Manhattan College and a Master’s from St. John’s University. Sister Mary joined the faculty at Bishop McDonnell Memorial High School as a Latin teacher and later taught Latin at Bishop Kearney High School. For three years, she was Principal of Saint Teresa of Avila School in South Ozone Park.

Returning to teaching, Sister taught English at Fontbonne Hall Academy and Saint Brendan Diocesan High School. She was a pastoral minister at Saint Columba and Blessed Sacrament, Brooklyn. She served as AV coordinator and a patient representative at St. John’s Queens Hospital before returning to elementary school as a librarian at Resurrection Ascension Catholic Academy, Rego Park, and later as a volunteer at Our Lady of Perpetual Help, South Ozone Park.

A Mass of Christian burial was celebrated on Dec 22, followed by burial at Calvary Cemetery in Brentwood.

Father Martin Carter, a Franciscan Friar of the Atonement, died Dec. 25 at age 91.

Father Martin Carter, a member of the Franciscan Friars of the Atonement. 

Father Carter, who was initially turned away from seminaries because he was Black, was well-regarded in the Diocese of Brooklyn, where he led Our Lady of Victory Parish for 13 years.

He had also served the diocese as director of its Office of Black Ministry following a stint as director of the Office of Black Ministry for the Diocese of Raleigh, North Carolina, in the 1980s.

Father Carter heard a call to the ordained priesthood but had a hard time convincing a diocese or a religious order of his vocation until the Atonement Friars welcomed him in 1948. He took his first vows in 1950 but was not ordained as a priest until 1975. While ministering as a high school teacher in Chicago in 1977, Father Carter founded Kujenga — Swahili for “to build” — a leadership-training program to emphasize young people’s positive identity and gifts. He took Kujenga with him to Brooklyn when he began his ministry there.

He was the first Black pastor of Our Lady of Victory, which was largely populated by Caribbean immigrants at the time Father Carter was named pastor in 1995. Father Carter brought new members and vitality to Our Lady of Victory.

A decade after his departure in 2008, Our Lady of Victory merged with two other parishes — St. Peter Claver and Holy Rosary — and the parish was renamed St. Martin de Porres.

“Father Carter was a pioneer in bringing about Black Catholic spirituality,” said Father Alonzo Cox, the current pastor of St. Martin de Porres parish. “He wanted to make people aware that we can worship as a Black Catholic community.”

Father Cox added that in his 13 years as pastor of Our Lady of Victory, Father Carter “did so much in renovating and restoring that church,” and credited him with “bringing in images of the Blessed Mary as a Black woman, and Jesus as a Black man.”

“He was very present in the life of Our Lady of Victory Church, and won’t soon be forgotten,” Father Cox said.

Father Carter is survived by his twin brother, Gilbert, who lives in High Point, North Carolina.

A funeral Mass was held on Jan. 8 at the friars’ Our Lady of Atonement Chapel in Garrison, New York, followed by burial in the order’s cemetery.

— Catholic News Service

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