Sister Mary Bernard (Catherine) Norton, RDC, a member of the Sisters of the Divine Compassion, died on March 5, 2003 at Good Counsel Convent in White Plains, Sister Mary Bernard was 98. She was born July 29, 1904 in New York City, the daughter of Joseph and Margaret (Menchin) Norton. Sister Mary Bernard entered the Divine Compassion Congregation on February 2, 1928. She received a BS in Education from Good Counsel College and an MS from Fordham Unversity. Sister Mary Bernard was licensed by the Board of Education of the City of New York in 1924 and began her long and fruitful career in Catholic education at Our Lady of Mt. Carmel School in Elmsford, NY. As a teacher and later Principal, she served 41 years at St. Frances de Chantal School in the Bronx. Upon her retirement from St. Frances, she worked as a remedial reading specialist at St. John the Evangelist School in Mahopac, NY. From 1977 to 1991 she volunteered as Librarian at Good Counsel Elementary School. Sister Mary Bernard was a gifted musician and as a student of the Pius X School of Liturgical Music at Manhattanville College enriched her love of music begun at the College of the City of New York in 1927. She sponsored an outstanding children's choir at St. Frances all through her long career. Sister Alice Feeley, President of the Sisters of the Divine Compassion, said, "Sr. Mary Bernard exemplified our community's long commitment to the education of children. Sister's extraordinary leadership and gracious dedication are remembered by her students and sisters alike." Sr. Mary Bernard is survived by her religious Sisters of the Divine Compassion and her nieces, Maureen McNamara of Mahopac and Lorraine Callanan of Ridgewood, NJ and nephews Robert Hetzer, Walter Hetzer and Paul Lankes.
Visitation was at Good Counsel Convent, 52 North Broadway, White Plains on Thursday, March 6, from 6 pm to 9 pm and Friday, March 7, from 2 pm to 5 pm and 7 pm to 9 pm. The Mass of Christian Burial was celebrated on Saturday, March 8, at 10 am in the Chapel of the Divine Compassion at Good Counsel. Interment was in Mt. Calvary Cemetery in White Plains. Memorial donations may be made to the Sisters of the Divine Compassion, 52 North Broadway, White Plains, NY, 10603. MCMAHON, LYON & HARTNETT FUNERAL HOME, INC 491 Mamaroneck Avenue White Plains (914)949-7777
Sr. Mary Bernard with her niece
Sr. Mary Bernard, as a young RDC and the first principal of St. Frances de Chantal School in the Bronx