RSHM Celebrates 100th Birthday

Posted June 30, 2020

With masks, social distancing, and temperature checks, and despite the risk of thunderstorms, sisters at Marymount Convent in Tarrytown, New York, held a festive 100th birthday celebration for Sr. Canice Walsh. The presider at Mass in the Chapel was Father Andrew King, master of ceremonies at St. Patrick’s Cathedral, who, in 7th grade, was a student of Sr. Canice’s. Mass was followed by lunch and a desert party with a cake depicting Sr. Canice’s beloved area of Ireland. Presentations included a special birthday blessing, a song celebrating Sr. Canice’s life, and of course “Happy Birthday,” after which Sr. Canice conveyed her thanks to all who created her celebration.
Sr. Canice was born in Inistioge, Co. Kilkenny, Ireland, and entered the Religious of the Sacred Heart of Mary in 1946. She did not fully retire until 2013 at the age of 93 when walking became more difficult. Her ministries in elementary and high schools took her to several areas of New York City and Long Island, British Columbia, Canada, Richmond, Virginia, and Rome, Italy. Though additional service at a variety of summer camps and attendance at summer workshops, Sr. Canice succeeded in visiting every US state except Hawaii. Sr. Canice speaks fondly and profoundly of all these experiences, commenting especially on the richness of the diversity among the people of God whom she has encountered and from whom she has learned so much. In a recent diocesan newspaper article, Canice is quoted as saying: “You learn not from what people say, but what you see around all the time.” ( Everyone who knows Sr. Canice also knows how incredibly well informed she remains, especially about politics and world events. She keeps up daily with the New York Times and other sources of news and commentary. A conversation with her is always insightful, spirited, and thought-provoking.
Sr. Canice has been an incredible gift to the RSHM and to the many hundreds of young people to whom she has ministered all these years, fulfilling our mission “that all may have life.” We are filled with gratitude! Ad multos annos!

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