Sisters of St. Joseph of CarondeletOctober 24, 2017

In Remembrance

Sister Mary Ancilla Leary, CSJ


Sister Mary Ancilla Leary, CSJ, 98, died Saturday, January 19, 2013, at St. Joseph's Provincial House, Latham, NY. She had been a Sister of St. Joseph of Carondelet for the past 80 years.

Sister Mary Ancilla, the former Ruth Mary Leary, was born in Glens Falls, NY on December 7, 1914, daughter of the late Thomas and Margaret Trombley Leary. She graduated in 1932 from St. Mary's Academy, Glens Falls, entered the novitiate of the Sisters of St. Joseph on March 19, 1933, and professed final vows on August 15, 1938. Sister Mary Ancilla received a bachelor's degree in chemistry from The College of Saint Rose and a master's degree and doctorate in education, both from The Catholic University of America. For 17 years, she taught in elementary and secondary schools in the Albany Diocese, including five years at St. Joseph’s High School in Schenectady, and four years as principal of the high-school division of St. Mary's Academy, Glens Falls. For 21 years, Sister Mary Ancilla taught in the Education Department at The College of Saint Rose where she also supervised secondary student teachers. In addition, she served as an educational consultant for the Albany Diocese. In 1977, Sister Mary Ancilla founded the Carondelet Educational Center in Latham and served as its executive director for 21 years. In her retirement years, Sister Mary Ancilla researched archival material for the Sisters of St. Joseph and served as a receptionist and driver.

Sister Mary Ancilla was a competent, accomplished and dedicated educator who used her God-given talents in wholehearted service to her religious community. While she enjoyed a rich, long and diverse life in her many ministries within the education field, Sister Mary Ancilla’s primary joy was rooted in her gift of a religious vocation as a Sister of St. Joseph. She participated untiringly in the dynamics of community life, not only in her local community but also on the provincial and congregational levels. We will miss Sister Mary Ancilla’s relentless determination, her wide-ranging expertise, her zest for life and her passionate interest in community affairs.

Sister Mary Ancilla is survived by a nephew, Thomas (Glenda) Leary of Naples, FL; a niece, Irene (Paul) Sylvain of Skowhegan, ME; many friends and former students; and the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet. In addition to her parents, she was predeceased by her sister, Margaret Tunkel; her brother, Thomas Leary; and many dear friends in the Sisters of St. Joseph.

Sister Mary Ancilla's Mass of Christian Burial was held on Tuesday, January 22, in the chapel of St. Joseph's Provincial House, Latham. Interment was in Our Lady Queen of Virgins Cemetery on the Provincial House grounds. Donations in Sister Mary Ancilla's name may be made to the Development Office, Sisters of St. Joseph, 385 Watervliet-Shaker Road, Latham, NY 12110.