Sisters of St. Joseph of CarondeletApril 10, 2021

In Remembrance

Sister Joan Marie Curley, CSJ (Sister Richarda William)


Sister Joan Marie Curley, CSJ (Sister Richarda William), 84, died Tuesday, December 22, 2020, at St. Joseph’s Provincial House, Latham, NY. She had been a Sister of St. Joseph of Carondelet for the past 65 years.

Sister Joan was born in Troy, NY, on June 17, 1936, daughter of the late Henry and Irene Kitson Curley. After graduating from Catholic Central High School, Troy, she entered the novitiate of the Sisters of St. Joseph on March 19, 1955 and professed final vows on August 6, 1962.

Sister Joan received a bachelor’s degree in elementary education, a master’s degree in special education, and educational leadership and administration certification, all from The College of Saint Rose; In addition, she received a master’s degree in pastoral leadership from St. Louis University.

For 25 years, Sister Joan served in the ministry of education in schools of the Albany and Syracuse Dioceses. She also was a teacher in the Readiness Program at the Cerebral Palsy Center in Albany (now the Center for Disability Services). In 1983, after completing her studies at St. Louis University, Sister Joan began her ministry in pastoral leadership roles in Cartersville, GA, and Schoharie, NY. In Schoharie, she was the first woman religious in the Albany Diocese to serve as a parish life director, a position she held at St. Joseph’s Parish.

In Sister Joan’s 25 years in the field of education, she served both as teacher and as principal. As teacher, she was keenly aware of engaging her students in learning about their subject material and their faith. As principal, she knew her role was to go beyond particular subject areas and lead students, teachers and staff in witnessing to their faith and reflecting the Gospel values of Jesus into their daily lives.

When Sister Joan began her role as a parish life director, she saw strong connections between that new ministry and her role as a teacher and school administrator. Both required excellent organizational and leadership skills, an open, friendly and welcoming attitude, a faith rooted in Gospel values and a dedication to developing and living a pastoral value and mission in a collaborative style. Sister Joan was blessed with these gifts, and she successfully provided for the overall day-to-day pastoral care and administration of St. Joseph’s Parish in Schoharie for 25 years. True to her call as a Sister of St. Joseph, Sister Joan was also a unifying presence within the entire faith community of Schoharie County. She lived her life willing to take risks for the sake of the Gospel, and her legacy will live on.

Sister Joan is survived by her brother, Richard O. Curley and his family, of South Padre Island, TX, and Huletts Landing, NY; many friends; and the Sisters of St. Joseph. In addition to her parents, she was predeceased by her dear friend, Sister Rose Marie Cardillo, CSJ, who died in 2004.

Due to the continued health concerns regarding the COVID-19 pandemic, there will be no public funeral services for Sister Joan at this time. A Memorial Mass will be scheduled at a later date.