MARYKNOLL, N.Y. -- Sister Helen Louise Gleason, MM, an educator in Hawaii for over 30 years, as well as the Marshall Islands and Papua, New Guinea, died Sept. 11, 2014, at Maryknoll Sisters Center, Maryknoll, N.Y. She was 85 years old.
Born on Jan. 20, 1929, in Cloquet, Minn. , to William and Exilia Demers Gleason, she was one of 11 children.
She was a graduate of Cloquet High School, Cloquet, Minn., and entered Maryknoll Sisters at their residence in Valley Park, Mo., on Oct. 14, 1948. She received her religious name, Sister M. Evelyn John, at reception.
After making First Vows in Valley Park on May 8, 1951, Sister Helen worked in the Multigraph Department at the congregation’s Motherhouse, making her Final Vows on May 8, 1954, at the Motherhouse.
From 1954-1956, she studied at Maryknoll Teachers College, Maryknoll, N.Y., receiving a bachelor’s degree in education in 1956. She was then assigned to Hawaii, where she taught until 1975. She was then sent to Majuro in the Marshall Islands, and later returned to Hawaii. She also taught in New Guinea until 1996.
After a brief period serving as principal and kindergarten teacher for St. Rose School, Proctor, MN, from 1983-1984, Sister Helen once more returned to Hawaii, where she was a kindergarten teacher at St. Ann’s School, Kaneohe, from 1984-1991.
After several other positions, she returned to New York in 2012.
A Vesper service will be held for Sister Helen on Monday, Sept 22, at 4:15 p.m., at the Annunciation Chapel, Maryknoll Sisters Center, followed by a Mass of Christian Burial on Tuesday, Sept. 23,, at 11 a.m. at the same location. Burial will be in the Maryknoll Sisters Cemetery on the Maryknoll Sisters Center grounds.
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