DANBURY, Conn. – Sister Mary John O'Rourke, OSU, Ursuline Sister of Tildonk, died Friday, May 22, at St. Ursula Center, Blue Point, N.Y.
She was born in Ozone Park, N.Y., the daughter of James and Mary O'Rourke, and entered the Ursuline Sisters, Congregation of Tildonk in 1954.
She graduated from St. John's University in Jamaica, N.Y., with a bachelor’s degree in education, followed by a certificate in administration. She earned a master’s degree in history from St. Joseph's College in West Hartford, and an advanced certificate in theology from the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley, Calif.
She served as principal at St. Gregory the Great School in Danbury for 22 years.
Before this, she taught in Our Lady of Grace School, Howard Beach, N.Y; Nativity BVM School, Ozone Park; and Holy Family High School, Huntington, N.Y. She served as principal in St. Thomas the Apostle School, West Hartford; St. Gregory the Great School, Harrison, N.Y.; and St. Lawrence O'Toole School, Brewster, N.Y.
She was an exceptional Catholic School educator and a leader in the Bridgeport Diocese in curriculum mapping process and technology initiatives. She led the entire school community at St. Gregory the Great School to earn the distinction of being a 2010-11 Blue Ribbon School of Excellence from the U. S. Department of Education.
She is survived by her sister, Patsy Kingsley; several cousins; and her religious sisters of the Ursuline of Tildonk community.
She was predeceased by a brother, James; and her parents.
A Mass of Christian burial will be celebrated Thursday, May 28, at noon in St. Gregory the Great Church. Calling hours in the church will be held before the Mass from 10 a.m. to noon. A Mass and burial will be celebrated Friday, May 29, at St. Ursula Convent in Blue Point.
Expressions of sympathy may be sent to: The Ursuline Sisters of Tildonk, Provincial Offices, 81-15 Utopia Parkway Jamaica, NY 11432 or St. Gregory the Great School, 85 Great Plain Road, Danbury, CT 06811.
In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to the Sister Mary John O'Rourke Scholarship Fund.
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