Gill Joyce Genealogy

Mary Gill (Sister Ricarda) (1882-1964)

Sister Mary Ricarda
A Religious 59 Years

The death of Sister Mary Ricarda, I.H.M., a member of the Order of Sisters, Servants of the Immaculate Heart of Mary for 59 years as a professed nun and novice, recalls an outstanding career in religion and education that had its beginnings in her native Parsons as a daughter of John and Mary Nolan Gill, in Inkerman where she made her home with her grandparents, Mr. and Mrs. John (*) Nolan, for ten years and in Pittston where she attended St. John’s Parochial School and actually laid the foundation for a dedicated life.

Sister Ricarda was the last of six brothers and sisters, four of whom were widely known in the area. Her sister, the late Mother Mary Marcella, was Mother General of the Immaculate Heart Order. A brother, Thomas Gill, was a grocer in Parsons for a half century and the father of Dr. John J. Gill of Forty Fort and of Attorney Thomas F. Gill of Wilkes-Barre. Another brother, Richard Gill, was an anthracite executive. Two others died in their twenties during the influenza epidemic of 1918. The Rev. Nicholas Gill, C.P., professor of canon law at St. Michael’s Monastery, Union City, N.J., is a nephew and Sister Mary Marita, I.H.M., principal of St. Patrick’s High School at Scranton, a niece.

Sister Mary Ricarda was principal of schools at Scranton, Stroudsburg, Lynnbrook, N.Y., and New Bern, South Carolina. The school in the South was an institution for colored children. She spent six years there in the 20’s on regular assignment and found it so challenging her tour of duty, at her request, was extended to ten years.

Hundreds of local residents knew her as a teacher at Ashley and Avoca. Her last assignment before retirement two years ago was as superior at St. Joseph’s Hospital, Carbondale. Since then she has been at Marian Convent, Scranton, where she was in residence when the final summons came.

A gifted, zealous and humble nun, Sister Mary Ricarda made a lasting impression on three generations of students, many of whom kept in touch with her until the end. Mild of manner and pleasant, she had a well deserved reputation for kindness, generosity, unselfishness and thoughtfulness. The personification of courtesy and graciousness, she inspired the affection of young and old for her warm personality and commanded respect on the basis of her talents and impressive record of service.

(*) Should be Peter.

   Editorial in The Times Leader (Wilkes-Barre, PA) - February 13, 1964

Return to Alphabetical Listing

Return to Gill Joyce Family Trees