HOMMAGE et RECONNAISSANCE Sr Virginia McCluskey, fdls

Soeur Mary Virginia était la fille de feu Lawrence McCluskey et de feu Helena Long. Outre ses consœurs Filles de la Sagesse, elle laisse dans le deuil : sa sœur Mary Ella (Bossé) ainsi que ses neveux et nièces. 

Sr Virginia McCluskey 1930 2018
(Sœur Mary Virginia of the Cross)

Sister Virginia McCluskey (Sister Mary Virginia of the Cross) Daughter of Wisdom, passed away peacefully after a short illness on July 22, 2018 at the age of 88, of which 68 years were consecrated in religious life. She was the daughter of the late Lawrence McCluskey and the late Helena Long. She leaves behind her sister Mary Ella (Bossé) and many nieces and nephews. A celebration of her life will take place on Wednesday, July 25, 2018 at 7:15 p.m. at Maison Accueil-Sagesse, 424 Montreal Road, Ottawa. A Memorial Mass will be celebrated on Thursday, July 26 at 10:30 a.m. at the Chapel Maison Accueil-Sagesse, 424 Montreal Road.

Prière auprès de Sr Mary Virginia, Fille de la Sagesse



Éloge funéraire de S. Mary Virginia McCluskey

Virginia est née le 5 janvier 1930 à Grand Falls au Nouveau Brunswick dans une famille de 7 enfants. Quoi qu’on parlait anglais à la maison, Virginia a fait ses études en français, ce qui en a fait une parfaite bilingue.  Elle a fait profession chez les Filles de la Sagesse le 27 août 1949 sous le nom de Mary Virginia of the Cross, ensuite a fait une formation en enseignement, suivie  d’une formation en économie domestique.

En 1964, Virginia est partie pour la Papouasie Nouvelle Guinée trois ans après l’arrivée des premières Filles de la Sagesse alors que la mission était  encore à ses débuts.  Partout où elle est allée Virginia a travaillé  à la formation des femmes et jeunes filles avec le but de leur donner fierté et confiance en elles-mêmes.

I first met Mary Virginia or Mary as she was known to us, in 1983 when I first arrived in Papua New Guinea. I was assigned to Kungim, a small, remote parish, with Monique Michaud and Mary Virginia. After my first year, Monique, who was Diocesan Health Secretary, was transferred to Kiunga where she could more easily carry out her work than out in a bush station. This meant that for the next three years I was alone with Mary Virginia and got to know her quite well.

 Virginia was a strong personality with multiple talents. She loved her work with the women and girls. In return, they loved her too. However it was not always easy. For example, once the women accused her of stealing the money of the Women’s Club. She assembled all the women, put the money on the table and told them: «Now, come and count the money»

 Virginia had a strong sense of intuition. We used to communicate with Kiunga, the main station, twice a day by two–way radio. One day I ran to our house saying that she was asked on the radio. She told me: «My sister has died»…which was true…Somehow she knew. The same happened another time when I asked her to come to the radio…she had dreamt of an accident the night before …in fact, her older brother, Dr. Lawrence and his wife had been killed in a car accident.

As I was new in PNG, she really became my mentor and I, her younger sister. Later, we found ourselves together again at the Iowara Refugee Camp where she continued her work for three years with the young girls and women.

 In 1999, after 35 years of service, Virginia returned to Canada for good-so she thought. However, in 2002, she was invited back to work with one of our young Melanesian sisters who needed help in preparing her exams. At the end of the year, Virginia came back to Canada permanently. She was assigned to the community of Kent Street, in Montreal where she helped with the up-keep of the house and the work with the immigrants.

 I cannot end without mentioning Virginia’s love for her family. As I was alone with her many years, I heard about her brothers and sisters, nephews and nieces.  She held you all in her prayers and I am sure she continues to do so.

A la suite de ces 35 ans de mission, et des années de service dans les communautés de Kent et de Wilderton à Montréal, Virginia, sentant ses forces diminuer, a demandé d’être transférée à la Communauté Notre Dame à Ottawa,  sachant qu’elle y recevrait de bons soins jour et nuit.

Virginia, tu nous as précédées dans l’éternité.
Ne nous oublie pas.
You have gone before us Virginia; until we meet again, please keep us in your prayers.