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Sisters of the Past

Sister Emellia Mary Murphy

6 May 1889 6 July 1947

Profiled January 2013

Patea, South Taranaki was the birthplace of Mary Murphy on 6 May 1889.
It is thought that she came from a farming family of four girls and at least four boys in Taranaki.  Two of the girls were twins, and one sister, Josephine, boarded at Sacred Heart Convent and late became Mrs Gibson.

Mary entered the Sisters of St Joseph on 15 August 1915, and was professed on 21 January 1917 as Sister Emellia.

The ministry that Sister Emellia spent her life involved in was that of house Sister, and 18 years of her religious life were spent at St Mary’s Convent, Grey Street, Whanganui.  There she cooked for the community, did the gardens and supervised the children in the lunch hour, often taking them swimming.  She was remembered fondly as a big woman with a great sense of humour, and who would entertain the Sisters with stories of the children’s playground fun.  She was very much involved in the annual St Mary’s Gala Day.

Often the Sisters would walk into the parish church in town and then Emellia would share in the visiting of families.

A diagnosis of terminal illness gave one of Emellia’s sisters, Mrs Prince, a nurse, the opportunity to assist Sister Stephen in caring for her at Sacred Heart.    There she died within months on 6 July 1947.

Requiem Mass was celebrated at Sacred Heart Chapel and she was buried at Aramoho Cemetery.

Gallery / Whakaahua

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