Sisters of St. Joseph of CarondeletApril 10, 2021

In Remembrance

Sister Monica Murphy, CSJ (Sister Sean Marie)

Sister Monica Murphy, CSJ (Sister Sean Marie), 77, died unexpectedly on Monday, August 5, 2019, as a result of an automobile accident in the town of Schroon, Essex County. She had been a Sister of St. Joseph of Carondelet for the past 58 years.

Sister Monica was born in Hudson, NY, on April 8, 1942, daughter of the late James and Kathryn Fitzpatrick Murphy. After graduating from St. Mary’s Academy, Hudson, she entered the novitiate of the Sisters of St. Joseph on March 20, 1961 and professed final vows on August 6, 1968.

Sister Monica received a bachelor’s degree in mathematics from The College of Saint Rose, a master’s degree in mathematics education from Duke University and a second master’s degree in counseling from The College of Saint Rose. For 53 years, she served as teacher, counselor and campus minister in schools of the Albany Diocese, including St. Mary’s High School, Hoosick Falls; Bishop Scully High School, Amsterdam; Notre Dame-Bishop Gibbons High School, Schenectady; and Catholic Central High School, Troy, where she ministered for  33 years. For 14 summers, Sister Monica was assistant director of Camp Scully, an Albany Diocesan camp for children on Snyder’s Lake. In 1988, she began what would be a 31-year career as director of Pyramid Life Center, a place of hospitality for vacation, workshops and retreats. Under Sister Monica’s brilliant and creative direction, Pyramid’s stunning natural beauty was enhanced by workshops in such areas as spirituality, writing, peacemaking and the environment, along with ample opportunities for outdoor physical activities to become a much sought-after place for individuals, families and groups.

Sister Monica was guided by a very simple but strongly held principle: she put herself in God’s hands and lived to serve others. She breathed generosity and exuded dedication, vitality and faith. Sister Monica’s ministry and her relationships were marked by an attentive presence to each individual, an unconditional respect for all God’s people, and a work ethic marked by productivity, reliability and fun! Her prayer manifested its fruits through loving and repeated acts of kindness, goodness and compassion. Sister Monica was a spring of life-giving energy and hope to all who knew her, and her memory will live on for years to come.

Sister Monica is survived by her beloved sister, Sister Maureen Murphy, CSJ; her nephews and nieces: Michael Day, Patrick Day, Dr. James Witko, Patricia Day, Joanne Bartolotta, William Day and Kathryn Day; many dear friends; and the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet with special mention of Sister Lynn Levo and Sister Jackie Power with whom Sister Monica lived. In addition to her parents, Sister Monica was predeceased by her dear sisters, Eileen Witko and Kathryn Day, and her nephew, Martin Day.

In keeping with Sister Monica’s wishes for a green burial, her interment took place on Friday, August 9, in the cemetery on the grounds of St. Joseph’s Provincial House in Latham. Calling hours were held in the chapel of the Provincial House following the burial on Friday from 4:00-7:00 p.m. with a prayer service at 7:00 p.m. Sister Monica's Mass of Christian Burial was celebrated on Saturday, August 10, in the chapel of the Provincial House.

Contributions in Sister Monica’s memory may be made to the Development Office of the Sisters of St. Joseph, 385 Watervliet-Shaker Road, Latham, NY 12110.