Sister Ann Marie Connolly

"I am with you always."

-Matthew 28:30

Ann Marie Connolly was the eldest of five children born in Boston to John and Mary (Flaherty) Connolly. Both were immigrants from Ireland and were very traditional Catholics. The family prayed together daily while kneeling on the kitchen floor and the children often heard their parents say, “with the help of God.” The children all attended Catholic schools.

Ann Marie, who was called “the boss” by her three sisters and brother, always wanted to be a Sister. “I loved my third-grade teacher and told her I wanted to be a nun just like her,” she remembers. “I then went to a Notre Dame high school and fell in love with SNDs.” She entered the Congregation in 1952, taking the name Sister Louise St. John.

Sister Ann Marie taught many grades, but her main focus was junior high school math. She loved teaching and was happy everywhere she was missioned, including Peabody, Worcester and Lawrence, Massachusetts. A former colleague recently contacted the Sisters with a message for Sister Ann Marie saying, “I so often remember you and the amazing gift you gave me by hiring me as a kindergarten teacher at Our Lady's in Waltham. I had a tough start which developed into a wonderful, exciting career in Catholic education. Thank you so much for having faith in me and giving me that chance.”

Sister has a keen sense of humor and enjoys being with her friends. She's known to say, “I just love people,” and she is happy living in community, “sharing life with other Sisters, sharing ideas and helping each other when we are down.” Sister Catherine Griffiths says of Sister, “Ann Marie has always been a faithful friend and fun to be with.”

True to her math teaching roots, these days she loves playing Triominos with her friends in the evenings. Her hobbies include sewing, crocheting, embroidering and knitting; she’s generally talented in everything she puts her hand to.

Sister Ann Marie has a great love for her family. The younger generations call her Auntie Ann and love when she's around. When each new member of the family was born, they received something crocheted by her, and they treasure anything she created.

At this time of her 70th Jubilee, Sister Ann Marie feels blessed by her vocation and by her happiness and joy.