In Memory

Sister Anne Pickard, IHM

April 12, 1918 – April 6, 2008

Sister Anne Pickard, IHM, formerly known as Sister M. St. Gerald, of the Sisters, Servants of the Immaculate Heart of Mary died on Sunday, April 6, 2008 at Our Lady of Peace Residence in Scranton, PA.

She was born on April 12, 1918 in Archbald, PA. She was the daughter of the late James E. and Anna G. Kearney Pickard. She entered the IHM Congregation on September 8, 1944 and made her temporary profession of vows on May 8, 1947 and her final profession of vows on August 2, 1950. She received a bachelor of arts degree and a master of science degree both in education from Marywood College.

Sister Anne was an elementary teacher and a religious educator. From 1947 to 1972 she served in schools in Rhode Island, New York, Maryland and Pennsylvania, including: St. Thomas School in Providence, RI; Sacred Hearts School in New York, NY and Our Lady Queen of Martyrs School in Forest Hills, NY; St. Bernardine School and St. Rita School in Baltimore, MD; and Cathedral School and Immaculate Conception School in Scranton, PA.

From 1972 to 1988, Sister Anne ministered as a director of religious education in response to a need for parish catechetical formation. She served in this capacity at St. Raymond Parish in East Rockaway, NY, St. John the Evangelist Parish in Binghamton, NY and Our Lady of Sorrows Parish in Vestal, NY.

Sister was the director of activities at the Marian Convent in Scranton, from 1988 to 1990. While in pre-retirement from 1990 to 2002, she continued in internal congregational service as a member of the support staff at the IHM Center.

From 2002 until the time of her death, Sister Anne engaged in the ministry of prayer at the IHM Center, the Marian Convent and at Our Lady of Peace Residence, all in Scranton.

She was preceded in death by five brothers, Joseph, Thomas, John, Gerald and James, two sisters, Margaret Ratchford and Mary L. Munley, and a niece, Sister Joanne Pickard, IHM.

She is survived by a brother, Robert of Escondido, CA, several nephews and nieces including, Sister Anne Munley, IHM, of Scranton, PA, grandnieces and grandnephews.

The funeral will be Friday, April 11, at 11:00 a.m. with Mass of Christian Burial at Our Lady of Peace Residence, 2300 Adams Avenue in Scranton. Reverend William B. Pickard, a cousin, will concelebrate and serve as homilist. Interment will follow at St. Catherine Cemetery, Moscow. Friends may call at Our Lady of Peace Residence on Thursday, April 10, between 3:00 p.m. and 7:00 p.m. A prayer service will be held at 4:30 p.m.

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, Fall 2008 issue

The maxim: “Still water runs deep” stirs in my heart when I think of my aunt, Sister Anne Pickard. Sister Anne spoke little, pondered deeply, cared intensely, and lived simply.

Born in Archbald, Pennsylvania, the daughter of James E. and Anna G. Kearney Pickard, she was the middle child in a family of nine. She entered the IHM Congregation on September 8, 1944, at a time when four of her brothers were in military service in Europe and the Pacific. She professed temporary vows on May 8, 1947, and made her final profession on August 2, 1950. The recipient of bachelor of arts and master of science degrees from Marywood College, she lived her dream of being an elementary teacher and a religious educator for more than four decades.

While many people will remember Sister Anne as an excellent English teacher in schools in Rhode Island, New York, Maryland and Pennsylvania or as a super-organized director of religious education in East Rockaway, Binghamton or Vestal, New York, those of us who knew her best will cherish her as a woman who shaped her life around what mattered most to her. Great love for God, her IHM Congregation, her family, and children were at the very core of her being. In a quiet, determined, and unassuming way, she consistently preached Gospel values, sometimes using words.

In the latter years of her life and most particularly during the time of her final illness, I had the privilege of journeying with her as she journeyed into the heart of God. As illness took its toll, the strength of her faith and trust taught me much about what it really means to be a woman of substance. I thank God for this good and holy woman and for the legacy of love that she has given to my family and to the IHM Congregation. May she, in the words of the poet, John O’Donohue, “continue to inspire us to enter each day with a generous heart to serve the call of courage and love….”

by Sr. Anne Munley, IHM

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