Sister M. Felice Hickey, IHM

Sister M. Felice Hickey, IHM, of the Sisters, Servants of the Immaculate Heart of Mary died on Thursday, March 1, 2012, at Our Lady of Peace Residence in Scranton, Pennsylvania.

She was born on November 1, 1917, in Scranton, PA and given the name Romayne. She was the daughter of the late Richard and Anna Flanagan Hickey. She entered the IHM Congregation on September 8, 1935, made temporary profession of her vows on May 2, 1938, and final profession of her vows on August 2, 1941.  

Sister Felice served as a teacher at the following schools: St. Rose Elementary School in Carbondale, PA, from 1938 to 1944; St. Ephrem Elementary School in Brooklyn, NY, from 1944 to 1952; South Scranton Catholic High School in Scranton, PA, from 1952 to 1956; Altoona Catholic High School in Altoona, PA, from 1956 to 1958; and St. Mary High School in Manhasset, NY, from 1958 to 1964.

At Marywood College in Scranton, PA, Sister Felice served as a faculty member and department chair of the the psychology department from 1966 to 1986, and advisement coordinator from 1986 to 1992.     

Sister also served as a counselor for IHM Consultation Services in Scranton, PA, from 1992 to 1998.

From 1998 until the time of her death, Sister Felice served as a prayer minister at the IHM Center, Marian Convent, and Our Lady of Peace Residence, all located in Scranton, PA.

She received a Bachelor of Science degree in social sciences from Marywood College. She also received a Master of Arts degree in psychology/guidance, and a Doctor of Education in counselor education, both from St. John’s University. 

She was preceded in death by three brothers, Reverend Joseph J., Richard, and Eugene, and a sister, Mary Hickey Moran.

She is survived by a sister, Anne Hickey Gavigan of Scranton, PA, a sister-in-law, Catherine Hickey of Scranton, PA, nieces, nephews, and cousins, including Sister Mary Howard Krotzer, IHM of Scranton, PA.

The funeral will be Wednesday, March 7, at 11:00 a.m. with Mass of Christian Burial at Our Lady of Peace Residence, 2300 Adams Avenue in Scranton. Friends may call at Our Lady of Peace Residence on Tuesday, March 6, between 3:00 p.m. and 6:00 p.m.  A prayer service will be held at 4:00 p.m. Interment will follow Mass on Wednesday at St. Catherine’s Cemetery in Moscow, PA.

Memorial contributions may be made to support the retired IHM Sisters c/o the IHM Sisters Retirement Fund, IHM Center, 2300 Adams Avenue, Scranton, PA 18509.

Reprinted from "In Memoriam" section of Journey, Summer 2012 issue 
Felice – her name means happy, and how fitting! She was a very happy person and spread that happiness to others. I was proud to be her cousin and her friend.

She was a counselor and a listener who guided you to solve your own problems. She held court on the back porch of the motherhouse and anywhere else you happened to meet her.

Sister Felice loved her family, her IHM Community and her beloved Marywood.

She and her dear friend, Sister Agnella, invited me to make a retreat with them at the Newton Lake Cottage. It wasn’t until our driver drove off that they informed me that I was chief cook and retreat master. It rained for three days but that didn’t bother Felice and Agnella who sat on the enclosed porch and prayed and read.

Sister Felice was a people person who loved to travel. She would put a sign on her door at summer school, “Companion Available.”

She loved Marywood, and when she retired she went to the Marian Convent and then to OLP. She joined the LIFE Program and spent many happy days participating in the activities. She especially liked Frank Walsh, her “chauffeur” as she called him.

As time passed, Sister Felice began to have memory loss and each time I visited her, the nurses would say, “Look who’s here to visit.” And she would say “Mary Howard, she’s my cousin.” But time passed and when she didn’t remember my name, she would simply say, “You belong to me.” And smile.

I was fortunate to be with her when she left this world. I reminded her that the Hickey clan was waiting for her as they did so many times at the Scranton Railroad Station when the Phoebe Snow pulled in—engineered by her father.

Let us pray that Sister Felice will remember all of us—family, friends, IHM Sisters, Marywoodians—and, dear Felice, remember me because “I belong to you.”

by Mary Howard Krotzer, IHM