Obituary: Sister Mary Helaine McGill, O.P.

OBIT_SrMHMcGillOPSister Mary Helaine McGill, O.P., a Sister of St. Dominic, Amityville, L.I., for 73 years, died Jan. 23. She was 94.
Born in Brooklyn as Mary Monica, her father was the architect responsible for designing and directing the building of Good Shepherd Church, Marine Park. He also created the grotto at St. Joseph’s, Monticello, N.Y., along with the ironwork behind the Dominican altar in the early days of Rosary Hall Chapel.
After graduating from All Saints H.S., Williamsburg, she entered the congregation from St. Gregory the Great parish, Crown Heights, in 1939. Later that year, she received the habit and her religious name, Sister Mary Helaine. 
One year later, she began her teaching ministry at St. Bartholomew, Elmhurst, 1940-62, and then American Martyrs, Bayside, 1962-85. One of her contributions was a written history of the founding of St. Adalbert parish and convent.
She taught in the Sacred Heart Early Childhood Program, Cambria Heights, 1985-87, and then moved to St. Luke School, Whitestone, where she tutored in the school, 1987-95, and volunteered in the pastoral services program, 1995-2000. 
Health issues necessitated a move to Carlin Hall, Amityville, in 2000. 
 A Mass of Christian Burial was celebrated in St. Albert Chapel, Amityville, on Jan. 29. Interment in the Sisters’ Cemetery followed.

3 thoughts on “Obituary: Sister Mary Helaine McGill, O.P.

    1. Sister Helaine was also my favorite. Kind and having a great sense of humor, she made all of her students feel special and cared for. I’ll never forget the day a kid in our class was doing his usual bullying – Sr. Helaine went over and grabbed him by the ear, walked him to the front of the room (with ear in hand) and made him apologize to the rest of the class. (That guy turned out to be one of my best friends!)
      Rest In Peace Sister – you are remembered with fondness, affection and love.

  1. I just found about Sr. Mary Helaine’s passing. She had a special gift relating to her students. I remember one day being brought down with my mother to see her. She told my mother ” he Tia not a stupid boy, he just needs to st fooling around”. Was she on the money with that one. 40 years later I had the pleasure of meeting her at a school reunion, her sight was failing. I introduced myself and she said without hesitation oh yes you became a policemen. Incredible! God have mercy on a truly wonderful person.

    Jim Crean