"The greater the work the more
important it is to establish it on
a solid foundation. Thus it will
not only be more perfect; it
will also be more lasting.”

St. Louise de Marillac

“Be diligent in serving
the poor. Love the poor,
honor them, my children,
as you would honor
Christ Himself.”

St. Louise de Marillac

 

S. Carol Joan McCarthy

 

Sister Carol Joan McCarthy died Friday, Oct. 20, 2023 at the age of 91 in Mother Margaret Hall, the nursing facility for the Sisters of Charity, Cincinnati, Ohio. Sister Carol was born on April 7, 1932 to Daniel J. and Irma (Dohse) McCarthy in Dayton, Ohio. She had a twin sister and two brothers. She was a Sister of Charity for 72 years.

Sister Carol grew up in Dayton, Ohio, attending Corpus Christi grade school and graduating from Julienne High School in 1950. She entered the Sisters of Charity on Feb. 2, 1951, saying she was drawn to the Sisters at Corpus Christi since she knew them as neighbors, living just down the street. Working at Good Samaritan Hospital after graduation confirmed for her that she wanted to become a Sister of Charity.

Sister Carol earned a Bachelor of Science degree in education from the College of Mount St. Joseph in 1964. She received a Licensed Practical Nursing degree in 1977 from St. Francis-St. George Hospital, Cincinnati, Ohio.  

Sister Carol’s ministries spanned more than 50 years, 31 in education. Her ministry of service began in 1952 when she went to St. James, Bay City, Michigan, and then to San Felipe, Albuquerque, New Mexico (1953-’56). Next it was St. Francis, Albuquerque, New Mexico (1956-’57); followed by St. John the Baptist, Harrison, Ohio (1957-’60); Holy Family, Cincinnati (1960-’64); Guardian Angels, Detroit, Michigan (1964-’68); and St. Luke, Detroit (1968-’70).

In 1970 Sister Carol took a break from the primary classroom and offered recreational therapy at Cincinnati Good Samaritan Hospital and Mother Margaret Hall nursing facility at Mount St. Joseph (1970-’73). After serving as school librarian at St. Lawrence, Cincinnati, she became a full-time student at St. Francis-St. George Hospital and went on to provide LPN services at Good Samaritan Hospital, Mother Margaret Hall, and Riverview Nursing Home, all in Cincinnati, as well as Maria Joseph Nursing and Rehabilitation Center, Dayton, Ohio, until 1989.

It was in those years that Sister Carol also had a sudden, desperate need for a kidney; her twin sister Eileen proved to be a match! Following her successful recovery, Sister Carol shared, “Eileen, you have given me an extended stay on this earth and you have given me the opportunity to serve. I am able to do what I do for others because you did what you did for me.”

The next ministry call Sister Carol answered was that of a GED tutor at the North Fairmount Community Center (1989-1999). Her skills were well suited to the students’ needs. After 10 years there she retired from teaching and was invited to come on board as a staff volunteer with The Women’s Connection, Price Hill, Cincinnati. “Feeling included as part of the staff, I pray, eat lunch, or take coffee breaks with them. Each one appreciates the least thing I do and I feel good when I go home,” Sister Carol once shared.

Sister Carol retired in 2005, joining her Sisters in prayer at Mother Margaret Hall and taking time for knitting, art and crossword puzzles. Also in 2005, as part of AOPHA (the Association of Ohio Philanthropic Homes, Housing and Services for the Aged), Sister Carol received first prize for her watercolor entitled “Only God Can Make a Tree.” It was a fitting way to begin retirement.

Sisters Noreen Ellison and Marge Kloos remembered Sister Carol for her gentle spirit and quiet sense of humor. “Her joyful and gentle demeanor was always a gift,” added Sister Marge. “I admired her for the way she encouraged others.”

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