News & Updates

Meet IHM Associate Pat Sheehan

Pat hopes to continue Theresa Maxis’ ministries of caring for the poor and each other, perseverance and social justice.

“Embracing courageously the Paschal Mystery”

IHM Direction Statement

Pat Sheehan is one of our active IHM Associates and ministers here at OLP. In Pat, the IHM legacy is in wonderful hands! Pat O’Connell Sheehan’s family has been lifelong, active members of St. Mary’s Parish in Dunmore. She is the daughter of Ann (homemaker) and Edgar (dental technician) O’Connell. Pat attended St. Mary’s grade school where she had the IHMs, in particular, her first-grade teacher, Sister Jeanne Gallagher. However, Sister Margaret Frances Gallagher was her aunt. I first met Pat when she came to visit both IHMs at OLP.

Pat is the oldest of six children. In high school, she pursued the commercial track at the request of her parents so that she could help the family financially. A neighbor helped her get a job as a teller at the Fidelity Bank. After her children were in school, she returned to banking. Now she worked at the Third National Bank as a part-time teller but, she advanced into management training and moved from head teller to assistant manager. The third merged with CoreStates Bank of Philadelphia Pat became a manager and assistant vice president. She retired from the again merged Wells Fargo Bank in 2012. She says that being a manager taught her how to listen and offer suggestions not directions.

Her family also reflects the “mystical presence in the world” (IHM Direction Statement). Her brother, Michael, is a social worker and suffers from a heart condition. Billy is a master craftsman but he’s currently suffering from a brain tumor and we pray for him daily at OLP. John is a school social worker in Pittsburgh and struggles with prostate cancer. Mary Lou is a guidance counselor at Holy Cross High School. Her sister, Peggy, was a counselor in independent living. Peggy died from Multiple Sclerosis. Pat enjoys walking the Marywood and IHM Center/OLP properties that include stops at Our Lady of Lourdes grotto where she prayed that Mary would “bring Peggy home.” Pat says she gets through the grieving process because of her faith and understanding of eternal life and belief that suffering is now over.

Pat has four children. Erin, a day care teacher in Moscow, has four children. Mary Ellen, an 8th grade reading specialist in North Pocono, has three children. Tricia also died of Multiple Sclerosis in 2013. She was diagnosed when she was 16. Tricia had one child. Rob is a Montgomery policeman in Gaithersburg, Maryland. He has three children. Pat has served on the national board for Multiple Sclerosis.

At OLP, Pat is both a sacristan and Eucharistic Minister. She’s active in her parish coordinating the CCD program and being Eucharistic Minister to the homebound. Pat now lives in the independent living section of Marywood Heights where she assists Sister Kieran Williams and enjoys working with the Marywood students who serve there for their practicum and internship experiences.

Pat’s Circle of Grace is guided by Sisters Gail Cabral and Mariam Pfeifer and includes Tina Freda and Carolyn Brazil (former OLP nurses’ aide and nurse), Gale Jaeger and Sally Conaboy. Pat attends congregation meetings and serves on the JPIC, LGBTQ+ Ad Hoc, Vocations and the new Spirituality Committees. She intermingles with the OLP Circle guided by Sister Robert Mary. She hopes to continue Theresa Maxis’ ministries of caring for the poor and each other, perseverance and social justice. It was in the Associate Program where she met Jane O’Neill who became a very dear friend.

Personally, Pat enjoys time with her grand- (11) and great-grand (4) children and being at the beach.

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