I was born in Boston, MA and grew up in Roslindale. I had two brothers and a sister. My father died when I was seven, and my mother was left to raise the four of us. Her faith has been a gift to each of us. I had a deep connection to the Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur through my aunt, Sr. Anne Margaret Malone. I went to Notre Dame Academy in Roxbury and later Hingham where I met many SNDdeNs who impressed me with their spirit of community and belief in God’s goodness. They seemed to like each other and their students.
I entered Notre Dame in 1967 at Ipswich. I graduated from Emmanuel College in 1972 with a degree in chemistry and a physics/ math. I am a teacher at heart and ministered in high schools in Massachusetts until I went to Kenya in 1983. I continued to work in secondary schools Kakamega and Igoji, Meru. St. Mary’s, Igoji, was the first school opened by the SNDdeNs in 1965. Our chapel was dedicated to Saint Julie Billiart. The mother of one of my students asked me if I knew St. Julie. I told her that I did. She said she was her teacher. That “saint” was Sr Julie Adams, SNDdeN. The science equipment had all come from Notre Dame ministries in the USA and every shelf was labelled. I was given the Meru name, Makena, the one who is always happy, by the grandmother of one of my students. I try and live up to my name.
In the early 80s, Notre Dame, Kenya began a formation program and welcomed Kenyan women. It is clear to me that Saint Julie’s spirit is very much at home in the Kenyan people. I was involved in vocation promotion and initial formation for six years and a member of the Kenya Unit Leadership Team. I had a wonderful experience of an international community.
I returned to the USA in 1996, though it hardly felt like home. Eventually, I discovered that home is not a place. Since then my ministries have been varied: the African Pastoral Center, Opening Doors Wider in Nursing (ODWIN), the National Planning Team of SNDdeN USA, Laboure College, and the US East-West Leadership Team. I currently reside in Carmel, CA.
Notre Dame Academy, Hingham, MA
Emmanuel College, Boston, MA
Saint Michael College, Colchester, VT
Maryknoll Language School, Musoma, Tanzania
Maryknoll Institute of African Studies, Nairobi, Kenya
Suffolk University, Boston, MA, Certificate in Non-Profit Administration and Finance
Sister Anne's Ministries
1972-1977 St Mary High School, Lawrence, MA
1977-1979 Hudson Catholic High School, Hudson, MA
1979-1983 Academy of Notre Dame, Tyngsboro, MA
1983 Maryknoll Language School, Musoma Tanzania (Swahili student)
1984-1985 Bishop Sulumeti Girls Secondary School, Kakamega, Kenya
1985-1990 St Mary Girls’ HS, Igoji, Meru Kenya
1990-1996 Vocation and Initial Formation Director, Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur, Kenya
1985-1991 Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur Leadership Team. Kenya Unit
1997-2000 Director, African Pastoral Center of the Archdiocese of Boston, MA
2000-2010 ODWIN Learning Center (Opening Doors Wider in Nursing), Dorchester, MA (Teacher, Counselor Executive Director)
2010-2014 Laboure College, Boston MA (Coordinator of the Health Care Opportunities Program)
2014-2019 Sisters of Notre Dame Leadership Team, East- West Province
2019-2020 Sabbatical, Carmel CA