Sister Robertine Flaherty, CSJ
Sister Robertine Flaherty, CSJ, 98, died Wednesday, September 9, 2015, at St. Joseph’s Provincial House in Latham. She had been a Sister of St. Joseph of Carondelet for the past 79 years.
Sister Robertine, the former Mary Catherine Flaherty, was born in Syracuse, NY, on January 11, 1917, daughter of the late William and Mary Hickey Flaherty. After graduating from St. Patrick’s High School, she entered the novitiate of the Sisters of St. Joseph on March 19, 1936 and professed final vows on August 15, 1941. Sister Robertine received a bachelor’s degree in Latin and a master’s degree in English, both from The College of Saint Rose. For nearly 50 years, she taught Latin and English in high schools of the Albany and Syracuse Dioceses. During her retirement years, she was an active participant in Carondelet Crafts.
Sister Robertine was, in many ways, a Renaissance woman, a multifaceted scholar who was gifted not only in academia but also in the arts with an appreciation running the gamut from opera to classical music to Broadway productions. An excellent educator with a dramatic flair, she also trained and coached state-recognized debate teams and brought high school musicals and theatrical performances to new heights of achievement. Sister Robertine was proud of her Irish ancestry and her roots in New Inn, County Tipperary, Ireland, and was steeped in the faith of her family. She was a dedicated Sister of St. Joseph who served God and neighbor for nearly 80 years.
Sister Robertine is survived by several nieces and nephews and the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet. In addition to her parents, she was predeceased by her sister, Helen Smith, and her brother, William Flaherty.
Sister Robertine’s Mass of Christian Burial was held on Saturday, September 12, at 10:30 a.m. from the chapel of St. Joseph's Provincial House, Latham. Calling hours were held at the Provincial House on Friday, September 11, from 4:00 to 7:00 p.m., with a prayer service at 7:00 p.m. Contributions in Sister Robertine’s memory may be made to the Development Office of the Sisters of Joseph, 385 Watervliet-Shaker Road, Latham, NY 12110.