Sister Joan Thomas McNerney, CSJ
Sister Joan Thomas McNerney, CSJ, 79, died Tuesday, November 13, 2012, at St. Joseph's Provincial House, Latham, NY. She had been a Sister of St. Joseph of Carondelet for the past 61 years.
Sister Joan Thomas, the former Joan Eleanor McNerney, was born on December 3, 1932, in Binghamton, NY, daughter of the late Sylvester and Delia Cooney McNerney. After graduating from St. Paul's School in Binghamton, Sister Joan entered the novitiate of the Sisters of St. Joseph on March 19, 1951 and professed final vows on August 15, 1958. She received a bachelor's degree and a master's degree in education, both from The College of Saint Rose. Sister Joan taught for 35 years in schools in the Albany and Syracuse Dioceses, including St. Joseph's School, Troy; St. Brigid's School, Watervliet; St. James School and Cathedral Academy, Albany; St. Brigid's School, St. John the Evangelist School and St. John the Baptist School, Syracuse; and St. Paul's School, Binghamton. In addition, Sister Joan was a chaplain at Binghamton General and Wilson Memorial Hospitals, Binghamton; and Mount Loretto Nursing Home, Amsterdam. She served the Sisters of St. Joseph as a staff member in dietary services, in the infirmary and on the Community Life Team.
Sister Joan Thomas was a faith-filled, hardworking woman of prayer and action who was ever open to the calls of ministry. Whether she was in the classroom, the hospital or the Provincial House, she was generous, kind and direct in her service of others. With her simple, steadfast nature and her quiet, unassuming kindness, Sister Joan was a trustworthy friend, a beloved family member and a devoted Sister of St. Joseph. In the last years of her life, Sister Joan faced her illness with fortitude and grace and was a true testimony to putting one’s faith into practice.
Sister Joan Thomas is survived by her dear sister, Jean Carlin; several nieces and nephews and their families; and the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet. In addition to her parents, she was predeceased by two brothers, Sylvester (Marjorie) and John McNerney; two sisters, Mary Harrison and Irene (Richard) Heggenbotham; her brother-in-law, Jack Carlin; and many dear friends in the Sisters of St. Joseph.
Sister Joan Thomas' funeral Liturgy was held Tuesday, November 20, at 10:00 a.m. from 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 Joan's memory may be made to the Development Office of the Sisters of St. Joseph, 385 Watervliet-Shaker Road, Latham, NY 12110.