Sister Joseph Kelly
1910 - 2014
Born: 27th November 1910
Entered Religious Life: 2nd February 1931
Died: 3rd June 2014
Sr. Joseph Calasanctius was born Anne Kelly to Mary Killeen and John Kelly in Ardnaglug, Moore on the borders of Roscommon and Galway on the 27 November, 1910. She had two sisters and two brothers.
She entered the Religious Sisters of Charity in Milltown, Dublin on the 2 February, 1931, she was professed on the 30 August, 1933 and made her Final Vows on 30 August, 1936. Most of her religious life was spent in England and Scotland. She went to Hackney on the 5 September, 1933 and spent six years there, she returned there for another five years from 1945 to 1950. Sr. Joseph also worked in Bath, Birmingham, Basildon, Langley, Bristol, Macclesfield. She was very popular with those whom she worked with and Sisters said she was the essence of kindness and had a great sense of humour. She co-founded the Hospice in Clydebank, Scotland with Sr. M. Paula Gleeson.
In 1995 she retired to Baldoyle, but kept active and was delighted to help children who needed assistance with eating. She came to Loyola, Merrion in 2002 and remained there until her death on 3 June, 2014.
In 2010 she received a medal, letter and a cheque from President Mary McAleese on the occasion of her 100th birthday. The following year she received a medal and letter from Mr. M. D. O’Higgins on her 101st. Very few centenarians would have the privilege of receiving accolades from two serving Presidents of Ireland.
A few weeks before her death one of the Sisters took her photograph, when shown it, she was not happy, she said: “my hair is awful, take another”. After a few more efforts she was satisfied!
She loved nature and particularly flowers, very often her room looked like a beautiful garden with flowers she received from her family. She was very proud of her family, took a keen interest in all their joys and sorrows. They were equally caring of her, visiting her frequently and cheering her when she was failing in health in recent years. When asked, “how are you, Sister?” she always replied “But how are you?” She kept her faculties up to the end. A few hours before she died, she said (very clearly), “I am going tonight”. May she rest in peace.