Sisters of St Joseph of Lochinvar

Sr M Bernard Woods

Sr  M Bernard Woods IMAGE

Died 09 December 1897

Annie Woods, the daughter of Peter and Annie Woods (McWilliams) was born at The Junction, Newcastle on 21st of October 1876 and entered St. Joseph's Convent, Lochinvar on the 6th February, 1893 taking the name of Sr. Mary Bernard of the Sacred Heart.

Sr. M. Bernard received the habit on August 17th, 1893 and in November of that year joined the community at Cessnock where Sr. M Stanislaus Tobin was superior. Before her Profession which took place on the 22nd August, 1895 she taught at Merriwa for a year and at Largs. Subsequently she was stationed at Largs, Cessnock and at Lochinvar.

By early 1897 it was evident that Sister had contracted consumption which took the lives of a number of our early Sisters.  Though treated by doctors in Maitland and Newcastle, the disease was making steady progress. During April and May of that year she was several times unable to go to the Church for Sunday Mass because of the weather.  Sister Mary Regis Connolly was also in the Infirmary suffering from the same complaint.

On the 4th July, 1897 we find in the community diary:  "After the midday Angelus Fr. O'Neill C.S.S.R. (giving the parish Mission) anointed Sister Mary Regis and Sister Mary Bernard and gave both Sisters Holy Viaticum."

They were also visited by His Lordship Dr. Dwyer. On the 20th August, 1897 Sr. Mary Bernard renewed her vows for four years in the Infirmary in the presence of Rev. Fr. Hand V.G.  She received the Last Sacraments on 2nd November and again on 5th December. On 9th December 1897 she died at 11.30 p m.

On the 11th December, the Solemn Office and Mass for the Dead commenced at 10 o'clock. Dr. Dwyer presided and gave the Last Absolution at the grave.

Sr. Mary Bernard Woods was buried in the Sisters' portion of the Lochinvar Catholic Cemetery.