Obituaries, Week of Jan. 28, 2023

Sister Beata Maria Berger died on Jan. 14, at age 95, having served the people of God as a member of the Sisters of St. Dominic of Amityville for 77 years. Born Agnes Berger on Nov. 29, 1927, she grew up in Elmhurst, Queens, in a close-knit family that belonged to St. Bartholomew Parish. 

Agnes entered the Sisters of St. Dominic in Amityville, New York, on Sept. 8, 1946. 

She was invested in the Dominican habit and received her religious name of Sister Beata Maria on Aug. 4, 1947. Sister Beata made her First Profession on Aug. 7, 1948, and soon began her 25 years of ministry in elementary education. 

Sister Beata received a Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education from Molloy College. She taught at St. Pancras School in Glendale, Good Shepherd School in Brooklyn, and St. Rose of Lima School in Massapequa before becoming the principal of St. Boniface School in Elmont. Later, Sister Beata taught at Notre Dame School in New Hyde Park and St. John the Evangelist School in Riverhead. 

After a sabbatical in St. Joseph’s in upstate New York, Beata felt called to a new ministry, that of Parish Services Coordinator for St. Ignatius Parish in Hicksville. 

After 10 years, the congregation asked Beata to be Administrator at Villa Maria in Water Mill, where she served for four years. Sister Beata’s final active ministry was to serve as an Advocate in Hope House Ministries in Port Jefferson from 1989 to 2002 with Father Frank Pizzarella, SMM. Since 2002, Sister Beata has been very present to the congregation, her family, and her friends through the ministry of Intercessory Prayer. 

She will be missed by her many nieces and nephews, their spouses, their children, and their grandchildren. 

The Mass of Christian Burial for Sister Beata Maria was held in St. Albert Chapel in Amityville on Jan. 19, followed by interment in the sisters’ cemetery. 

Dolores Regina Conklin Leckey, born on April 12, 1933, in Queens, to Joseph and Florence (Kelly) Conklin, died Jan. 17, 2023, in her home in Arlington, Virginia. 

Leckey served as the first executive director of the Laity of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops for more than 20 years, was a fellow at the Woodstock Theological Center of Georgetown University, authored eight books, and was one of the founders of the Arlington Partnership for Affordable Housing. 

She is survived by her children, Mary Kate Marcellus, Celia Leckey, Thomas Joseph Leckey, and Colum Leckey; her children by marriage Ron Marcellus, Ricky Bible, Margaret (Kabalin) Leckey, and Donna Bible; her grandchildren, Alana Brase, Roman Leckey, Monica Leckey, Maria Leckey, Cameron Marcellus, Grace Leckey, and Conor Marcellus; her grandchild by marriage Maria Elkin; her great grandchild Rory Alexander Elkin-Brase; her brother-in-law John Leckey and his wife Myra Leckey, and their children and grandchildren; and her nephews by marriage, Donald, Terry, and Alex Cannon and their families. 

Her husband of 46 years, Thomas Philip Leckey, preceded her in death. Her second husband, Joseph Schatzel, also preceded her in death. 

A wake/prayer service was held on Jan. 25, and a funeral Mass was held on Jan. 26 at Our Lady Queen of Peace Catholic Church in Arlington.