In Memory

Sister M. Dolorosa Loughney, IHM

June 1, 1927 – January 28, 2018

Sister M. Dolorosa Loughney, IHM, of the Sisters, Servants of the Immaculate Heart of Mary died on Sunday, January 28, 2018 at Our Lady of Peace Residence in Scranton.

She was born on June 1, 1927, in Pittston, PA, and given the name Marjorie. She was the daughter of the late John and Margaret Reilly Loughney. She entered the IHM Congregation on February 2, 1946 and made her temporary profession of vows on August 2, 1948 and her final profession of vows on August 2, 1951.

Sister Dolorosa served as a teacher in the following schools: St. Mary Elementary School in Avoca, PA, from 1948 to 1949; St. Peter Parish School in Wellsboro, PA, from 1949 to 1954; St. Ephrem Elementary School in Brooklyn, NY, from 1954 to 1960; St. Patrick Elementary School in Olyphant, PA, from 1960 to 1969; St. Cecilia Elementary School in Exeter, PA, from 1969 to 1971; St. Mary of Mt. Carmel Elementary School in Dunmore, PA, from 1971 to 1974; St. Clare Elementary School in Scranton, PA, from 1974 to 1977; Our Lady of Peace Elementary School in Clarks Green, PA, from 1977 to 1986; and St. Matthew Elementary School in Wilmington, DE, from 1986 to 1998.

She also served as director of volunteers at the Marian Convent in Scranton, PA, from 1998 to 2006; and as support staff at Our Lady of Peace Residence in Scranton, PA, from 2006 to 2014.

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

She received a Bachelor of Science degree in education from Marywood College.

She is preceded in death by three sisters, Jean Maughan, Catherine Delaney, and Mary Dooley, and four brothers, William, James, Jack and Joseph.

She is survived by nieces and nephews, and by the members of the IHM Congregation.

The funeral will be Thursday, February 1, 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 Wednesday, January 31, between 3:00 p.m. and 5:00 p.m. A prayer service will be held at 4:00 p.m. Interment will follow Mass on Thursday 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, Spring 2018 issue

Reflection given by Sister Ellen Maroney, IHM Congregation President

Sister M. Dolorosa (Dolie) Loughney, funeral February 1, 2018

“You hollow us out, God, so that we may carry you, and you endlessly fill us only to be emptied again. Make smooth our inward spaces and sturdy, that we may hold you with less resistance and bear you with deeper grace.” (Jan Richardson, Night Visions)

Those who knew Dolie would surely say that she was a woman whose entire life bore witness to these words of poet and writer Jan Richardson. The inward spaces of her heart were made smooth and sturdy through a lifetime of unwavering fidelity to and love for her God. Her deep trust and devotion to Mary was the source of her own willing “fiat” every single day. Though physically her head may have been bent downward and her eyesight almost gone, her spirit and heart lifted us heavenward every day and her heart-vision allowed her to see far sharper and clearer than most of us with our two good eyes. As we heard in the beautiful stories yesterday, Dolie was a woman “full of grace” who made us better because of her presence among us.

For over seventy years as an IHM, Dolie ministered as a kindergarten and first grade teacher and, as was recounted yesterday, she taught by example, not just words. A favorite quote of mine is that, “A good teacher can inspire hope, ignite the imagination, and instill a love of learning.” (Brad Henry). By this definition, Dolie was a great teacher. She loved her students, and reveled in their enthusiasm and energy. She was tireless in her planning and took great pleasure in her students’ joy and excitement, especially during the music classes. Her gifts of gentle caring and kindness made a lasting impression that opened them up to lessons beyond their textbooks. She continued to share that same dedication and goodness when she became the director of volunteers at the Marian Convent and later served on the support staff here at OLP. For the last several years, she has been a prayer minister at OLP. To all, she was a clear sign of God’s love and joy.

We bring thoughts of Dolie’s goodness to our prayer today as we also remember very specially her parents, Margaret and John, her sisters, Jean, Catherine, and Mary and her brothers William, James, Jack, and Joseph, who now welcome her home to the eternal celebration of God’s love, where there is no more sorrow or pain and where she now knows the fullness of peace and joy she so richly deserves.

We pray in a special way today for those who will miss Dolie dearly, especially Tree and Erin, her nieces and nephews, St. Kenneth, her adopted nieces, nephews, and members of the Polley family, her Band members, her IHM sisters, especially those who lived with her in Household 2C and at Cathedral Convent, and all those who shared life and friendship with her.

C.K. Chesterton wrote, “Angels can fly because they take themselves lightly.” In some way, I think that’s at the heart of what Dolie’s life taught us: don’t take ourselves too seriously— leave room for the surprises and gifts of others and God to fill our lives. Put aside the burdens imposed on us by circumstances, people, even our own selves. Acknowledge the many small deaths along our way that are part of everyone’s life, not just our own, but don’t allow any of them to define or confine us. Practice resurrection every day. Dolie did that; let us learn that lesson from her.

I now ask Sister St. Kenneth to place the scriptures on Dolie’s casket, for she heard the Word of God; indeed, she staked her life upon it, and received life to the full … the Word now beckons Dolie home.

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