On this the Feast of the Purification, Candlemas, we celebrate the life of Sister Frances Hagan, a Sister of St. Joseph for nearly sixty-eight years. Candlemas is a feast of light, not ordinary light but the light that radiates the presence of Jesus in our lives, Fran radiated that life and light with her constant attention to those who came into her presence.
As a teacher in the Brooklyn Diocese and in the Academy of St. Joseph for twenty-six years, Fran was a sign of hope and encouragement to all. It was her love of life that gave others a sense of self-worth and confidence to meet the challenges encountered. Family, sisters in community and friends could always count on Fran for her welcoming smile, delight in gathering others for celebrations or times to simply enjoy one another’s company. Her love of life came from a deep awareness of God’s unconditional love for her and all others.
Fran earned BA in History from St. Francis College and an MA in Sacred Science from Saint Bonaventure University.
This past November, Pope Francis inaugurated a year to celebrate consecrated life. He called those of us who have chosen this life to “Wake up the World” to the love of God present in all creation.
“In a polarized society, where different cultures
experience difficulty in living alongside one another,
where the powerless encounter oppression, where
inequality abounds, we are called to offer a concrete
model of community which, by acknowledging the
dignity of each person and sharing our respective
gifts, makes it possible to live as brothers and sisters.” (From the Vatican, 21 November 2014, Pope Francis)
Fran lived this communion every day of her life and she accepted the challenge to live out her consecrated life with passion, courage and great joy. We thank her, and we promise we will strive to imitate what she has shown us.
Sister Frances Hagan, CSJ died on January 27, 2015 in the 68th year of her religious life.