Obituaries

Obituaries, Week of March 6, 2021

Sister Theresa Fitzgerald, IHM, (formerly known as Sister Mary Lena) a member of the Sisters, Servants of the Immaculate Heart of Mary for 67 years, died on Feb. 8, at Our Lady of Peace Residence in Scranton. She was 88.

Sister Theresa Fitzgerald, IHM

She was born on Sept. 5, 1932, in Dushore, Pa. Sister Theresa entered the IHM Congregation on Sept. 8, 1950, and made her temporary profession of vows on Aug. 2, 1953, and her final profession of vows on Aug. 2, 1956.

She received a Bachelor of Arts degree and a Master of Science degree in elementary education from Marywood College, Pa.

Sister Theresa served as a teacher for over 50 years. During her lifelong ministry, she taught in St. Ephrem Elementary School in Dyker Heights, 1970-76.

She was also principal at St. John the Evangelist Elementary School in Binghamton, N.Y., 1968-1970; and served as a teacher and library assistant at St. Agnes Elementary School in Baltimore, Md., 1994-2004.

Sister Theresa served as assistant registrar at Marywood College in Scranton, Pa., 1985-94; and accounting assistant in the Business Office at the IHM Center in Scranton, Pa., from 2004-13.

She was a volunteer and also an Educational Enrichment Institute instructor at the IHM Center in Scranton, Pa., 2013-14.

From 2014 until her death, Sister Theresa was a prayer minister at Our Lady of Peace Residence.

Interment was held at St. Catherine’s Cemetery in Moscow, Pa. The funeral Mass and graveside service were private.


Sister Virginia Immaculate Murthum, C.S.J., a member of the Congregation of the Sisters of St. Joseph for 74 years, died on Jan. 6.

Sister Virginia Immaculate Murthum, C.S.J.

She entered the congregation on Sept. 8, 1946, from her home parish of St. Pascal Baylon, Queens.

She earned her BA in Education from Empire State College in 1978 and in 1980 she earned her MA in Special Education from St. John’s University.

Her ministries included several parishes in Brooklyn, such as St. Joseph, Prospect Heights (1948-51); Nativity of Our Blessed Lord, Bedford Stuyvesant (1951-55); St. Cecilia, Greenpoint (1955); Transfiguration, Williamsburg (1955-61); St. Camillus, Rockaway Park (1961-62); St. Michael, Sunset Park (1962-63); as well as St. Martin of Tours (1963-67); St. Thomas Aquinas (1967-73); and Nazareth Day Care, in Manhattan (1973-75).

Sister Virginia also served at the Diocesan Office, Brooklyn (1980-82) and St. Michael in Flushing (1982-2010).

Her wake and Mass of Christian Burial took place in Sacred Heart Chapel, Brentwood, on Jan. 11, followed by her interment in St. Charles Cemetery, Farmingdale.


Sister Margaret Marie McGrory, SSND, a member of the School Sisters of Notre Dame for 61 years, died on Feb. 22, at Ozanam Hall in Bayside, New York. She was 88.

Sister Margaret Marie McGrory, SSND.

She was born on Jan. 19, 1933, in The Bronx, to Irish parents. Her twin sister Helen is now Sister Philip Mary, SSND. They were both baptized at St. Athanasius.

She attended Cathedral High School. During and after her senior year, she worked as a clerk in a bank and then accepted a position at Simplicity Pattern Co. in midtown Manhattan as a typist.

Sister Mary entered the School Sisters of Notre Dame in Sept. 1957 in Baltimore and professed first vows on July 25, 1959.

After pronouncing her vows, she taught at St. Anthony School in South Ozone Park.

She also taught at Catholic schools in Sayville and East Islip, and was Librarian at Our Lady of Fatima School in Wilton, Connecticut.

Sister Mary was an office assistant and tutor at St. Saviour High, Park Slope.

In her retirement, she resided at Villa Notre Dame in Wilton.     

Her burial was held on Feb. 25 at St. Mary Cemetery in Bethel, Conn. Arrangements were handled by Gleason Funeral Home in Bayside, New York. A Memorial Mass will be celebrated at Villa Notre Dame when COVID protocols permit.

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