Friday, February 25, 2011

May She Rest in Peace

One is my Center;
Wisdom and Word

Dwelling within me,
Spoken and heard.
                           Sr. Margaret Banville, OSsR

Sister Margaret
"Peg" Banville, OSsR
Born October 9, 1925
Professed Vows January 23, 1951
Final Vows January 23, 1954
Solemn Vows May 31, 1961
Born into Eternal Life February 21, 2011

Our beloved Sister Margaret “Peg” Banville, OSsR, a contemplative nun of the Order of the Most Holy Redeemer and senior member of our community, died Monday, February 21, 2011, at the Redemptoristine Monastery of Esopus, NY after a long illness.

She served in the Canadian Women’s Army Corps from 1943 to 1946 and was discharged as a Sergeant before entering the Redemptoristine Nuns in 1949. She spoke of her vocational call to contemplative life as a mysterious one that came suddenly and irresistibly. In 1957 she came to Esopus with five sisters to open a new monastery on the grounds of Mount St. Alphonsus. She fulfilled many offices in community including prioress, vicar, novice mistress, and archivist. She attended international General Assemblies of the Order of the Most Holy Redeemer in Rome in 1983 and 1992. She was also a certified spiritual director. She sought naturalization as a citizen of the United States in 1968 and proudly exercised her right to vote with great diligence.

She was born on October 9, 1925 in Toronto, Canada, a daughter of the late Wilfred Banville and Catherine Bergin. She professed religious vows as a Redemptoristine nun on January 23, 1951 as Sister Mary Gemma of the Blessed Sacrament. She shared with many the depth of her spirituality grounded in the life of Jesus Christ and in awe of the Wisdom of God as well as the humility of God who creates, saves and forgives.

Besides her ten Redemptoristine Sisters, survivors include one sister, Grace Somers of Toronto and many nieces and nephews along with their children and grandchildren. She was predeceased by three brothers and two sisters.

Friends will be received in the chapel of the monastery from 2 to 4 p.m. and 7 to 9 p.m. on Wednesday with a Vigil Prayer Service at 7:30 p.m. A Mass of Christian Burial will be offered at 10:00am on Thursday in the monastery chapel. The Rev. Francis Jones, CSsR representing Provincial Rev. Kevin Moley, CSsR will preside. Rev. Andrew Costello, CSsR, will offer the homily. Burial will be at Mount St. Alphonsus cemetery.

The Judgement 

What will it be like?
I have to face him.
Will he say I am a disgrace,
turn me away, rejected?
I have to face him.

We will surely arrive soon;
The City gates come into view.
I see an old man peering out.
He sees our caravan,
runs quickly toward us.

We are face to face.
He speaks,
“Welcome, daughter!
Welcome to your home
With blessing and joy!”

It will be like that!

Sr. Margaret Banville, OSsR


Kathy said...

Thanks for posting that beautiful poem. "It will be like that." Very comforting.

Gordi's Bridge said...

Such a beautiful poem. Such a simple explanation, "wow". We will miss Peggy but these are beautiful words to contemplate.

Gordi's Bridge said...

Such a beautiful poem. Such a simple explanation, "wow". We will miss Peggy but these are beautiful words to contemplate.

vero dick said...

There will be another star inthe heavens shining down her grace on us.

Anonymous said...

Peggy was Rev. Mother in the 60's when I was a young
temporary professed nun at Esopus. She was always humble and manifested loving kindness to all. I was inspired to "visit" the Redemptoristine website today and think that I was meant to find out about her passing. I will not only pray for her but to her, as I believe she has truly seen the face of Jesus.
Barbara Strazewski (nee Burns)

Sr. Hildegard said...

Barbara, thank you so much for your comment. Your going to the site was an example of divine synchronicity. The community will be so happy to know what you shared. Our new community e-mail address is Let us know how you are doing.