Sisters of St Joseph of Lochinvar

Sr M Benedict O'Shea

Sr Mary Benedict  O'Shea IMAGE

Died 13 November 1905

Ellen O'Shea who became Sr. Mary Benedict of the Infant Jesus was born in Ballintaggart, Co. Kerry in Ireland on 2 July, 1871, the daughter of Thomas and Ellen O'Shea (O'Donnell).

She entered St Joseph's Convent at Lochinvar on 1 January, 1895 and received the habit with Sisters Mary Dominic Barry and Cecelia Barry on the 10 July, 1895 at a ceremony at which Rev Fr Dwyer presided.

On the 30th of that month she joined the Dungog Community where she remained till the end of the year. In mid 1896 she went to Merriwa for six months and 1897 found her at Lochinvar and teaching at Knockfin.

Sister Mary Benedict O'Shea made her First Profession with Sisters Mary Dominic and Cecelia on 10 July, 1897. Immediately after Profession she went to work in Carrington where she remained till June, 1899. Having renewed her vows for four years, Sister went to Merriwa for the remainder of 1899. Early in 1900 she was in Burwood. On May 28th of that year we read: "Mothers Mary Evangelist and Hyacinth went to Burwood. Sr M Benedict ill." She was taken to Lochinvar for a time and on recovery returned to Burwood where she worked until December, 1903.

In 1904 Sr M Benedict spent some months in hospital. When she had recovered she came back to Lochinvar and on 3 July, 1904 travelled to Armidale with her brother for a change. In November of that year she returned with Mother M Evangelist and Sr Sebastian.

Her health was still poor as she was suffering from consumption. She was in the Infirmary from February onwards. During that time there were a few visits to Dr Harris in Newcastle as well as visits from Dr Power. On November 12th Fr McCormack gave her the Last Sacraments and prepared her for death. Sr. Mary Benedict O'Shea died in the Infirmary at Lochinvar on 13 November, 1905.

On the 14 November, 1905 Office and Requiem Mass was said at 10 o'clock. Rt Rev Dr Dwyer presided. The burial service was read by the bishop with all the priests present at the grave. Sister was buried with the other deceased Sisters in their portion of the Lochinvar Catholic Cemetery. After the burial the bishop went to the community and spent some time with the Sisters.