Sister Margaret (Mary Bartholomew) Welch (1934-2021)

Sister Margaret was born Margaret Mary Welch in 1934 in Waltham, Mass., to parents Bartholomew M. Welch and Mary (Slauenwhite) Welch of Waltham. She entered the Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur on August 1, 1951, taking her First Vows in 1954 and her Perpetual Vows in 1959.

Sister Margaret earned a BA from Emmanuel College and MEd from Salem State. After completing thirty-six years of classroom teaching here and in Japan, then spending five years as a cook in homeless shelters in Lowell, Lawrence, and Boston, Mass., Sister Margaret began her very active retirement in Ipswich, Mass. She served as a receptionist, a driver, and a tireless organizer of fundraisers and donation drives to benefit those less fortunate. She was acutely attentive to the needs of the poor, and consistently generous to local charities.

In addition to her many years of teaching, cooking, and charity work, Sister Margaret participated as a control in more than 50 medical research projects to benefit the aging population. With her characteristic dry wit, Sister Margaret would tell her surprised listeners she did it "for the money."Sister used the stipends she earned to defray the expense of sending much-needed supplies to her Sisters of Notre Dame serving in developing countries. Another and equally important motivation, in her own view, was the opportunity the medical studies gave her to use her God-given gift of good health to aid those not so blessed. Generous, witty, and deeply thoughtful to her very last days, Sister Margaret Welch even donated her body for medical research, as one final act to benefit others.

Sister Margaret Welch went peacefully home to her Good God on June 8, 2021, at the St. Julie Billiart Residential Care Center in Ipswich, Mass.

Sister. Margaret was predeceased by her sister, Jane Leard of Waltham, Mass. She is survived by two sisters, Joanne Mente of Concord and Ann Purcell of Auburndale, her many loving nieces and nephews, and one grand-niece. Sister Margaret is also survived by her Sisters and Associates in the Notre Dame community, her friends and former students, and the devoted staff of the St. Julie Billiart Residential Care Center.

A Mass of Christian Burial was celebrated privately at Our Lady Queen Chapel in Ipswich, Mass., on Friday, June 11, 2021.

Some of Sister Margaret's Ministries

1957 Blessed Sacrament School, Cambridge, Mass.
1958-60 Cardinal Cushing Central High School, South Boston, Mass.
1960-63 Academy of Notre Dame, Tyngsboro, Mass.
1965 Ascension School, Worcester, Mass.
1966 Notre Dame Academy, Hingham, Mass
1966- St. Mary School, Lynn, Mass. 1971 Guidance;
1977 Bishop Stang Guidance; NDA Hingham Guidance; St. Mary’s Lawrence 1985 Guidance

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