Sister Mary Joan Newell, CSJ
Sister Mary Joan Newell, CSJ, 93, died Tuesday, October 18, 2011, at St. Joseph’s Provincial House, Latham, NY. Sister Mary Joan had been a Sister of St. Joseph of Carondelet for the past 75 years.
Sister Mary Joan, the former Carol Elizabeth Newell, was born in Utica, NY, on April 9, 1918, daughter of the late Walter and Mable Carney Newell. After graduating from Utica Catholic Academy, she entered the novitiate of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet on August 15, 1936, and pronounced final vows on August 15, 1941. Sister Mary Joan received a bachelor’s degree in general science and a master’s degree in biology, both from The College of Saint Rose. For 36 years, she taught junior high and high school science in schools in the Syracuse and Albany Dioceses as well as in Savannah, Georgia. In addition, Sister Mary Joan served for 13 years as religious education coordinator at St. Joseph’s Parish in Fort Edward, NY, and 10 years as chaplain at St. Luke’s Memorial Hospital (Faxton St. Luke’s Healthcare) in Utica, NY. After 60 years of active ministry, Sister Mary Joan moved to St. Joseph’s Provincial House, Latham, where she served in many volunteer capacities with a special focus on the ministry of prayer.
Sister Mary Joan was a gracious and lovely woman of faith. An excellent teacher of science, a dedicated religious educator and a compassionate hospital chaplain, she was gifted with an innate sensitivity and an understanding heart. An avid reader and a wonderful conversationalist, Sister Mary Joan enthusiastically embraced the Second Vatican Council, especially its renewal of the Liturgy and its focus on the people of God. Students and patients benefited from her careful and caring instructions, and friends were blessed with her quick wit and zest for life. Sister Mary Joan was a mentor and wisdom figure for many, and her presence will long continue among us.
In addition to her parents, Sister Mary Joan was predeceased by her beloved brothers and sisters: Lt. Col. Donald Newell, Carney Newell, Mary Joan Karlen and Cornelia Warren; her nephew, Jeff Newell; and many dear friends in the Sisters of St. Joseph.
Sister Mary Joan is survived by her nieces and nephews and their families: Nora Smith, Sheila Bauer, Linda Parker, Marvel Denslow, Mark Newell, Michael Newell and Stephen Newell; by many cousins and friends; and by the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet.
Sister Mary Joan’s funeral Liturgy was celebrated on Friday, October 21, at 10:30 a.m. in the chapel of St. Joseph’s Provincial House, Latham. Interment was in Our Lady Queen of Virgins Cemetery on the Provincial House grounds. Contributions in Sister Mary Joan’s memory may be made to the Development Office of the Sisters of St. Joseph, 385 Watervliet-Shaker Road, Latham, NY 12110.