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Sisters of the Past

Sister Benedict Margaret Bridgeman

May 1888  -  22 September 1964

Profiled June 2012

May 1888 was the month of entry into the world for Margaret Bridgeman.  She was born in Ireland, possibly in County Mayo, as that was where her sister Mary was born 12 years later.  Her mother was Bridget, nee Corbett, and her father, John Bridgeman.  She had at least another sister and two brothers.
It is not known when she and most of her siblings emigrated to New Zealand, but on 26 April 1916 she entered the Sisters of St Joseph in Whanganui.  Margaret was professed on 23 January 1918 as Sister Benedict.  The same day, her younger sister Mary received the habit of the Sisters, and she went on to make her Profession as Sister Ephrem in 1919.

Sister Benedict’s ministry was to the practical care for the Sisters in community.  She was a hard-working woman, a capable cook who knew how to extend the rations during the wartime.  Her time management was to be admired washing was done early, dried, ironed, and away as soon as possible.  This was in addition to her cooking tasks which also included baking for morning and afternoon teas for the Sisters in the school.

Benedict’s health was not good as she suffered considerably from asthma for much of her life.  She was a quiet and reserved person, and was never known to complain about her health.Benedict was stationed at many of the Convents of the Sisters of St Joseph in the lower North Island.

One brother, Charlie, was a builder in Hastings, and her sister Mrs Percival lived there also.  Another brother farmed at Colyton near Feilding.

Sister Benedict died at Sacred Heart Convent in Whanganui on 22 September 1964.  Mass of Requiem was celebrated in the Chapel, and she was buried in the Aramoho Cemetery.

Gallery / Whakaahua

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