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02 Oct 2022

The late Sister Helen Kennedy of Templemore - An Appreciation

Helen's death came as a shock to many, coming so soon after the death of her great friend and companion Sister Breda Coman who died on May 15

The late Sister  Helen Kennedy of Templemore - An Appreciation

Sr. Helen Kennedy

The death occurred on Monday, July 11 last, of Sister Helen (Lillie) Kennedy, Church Street, Templemore following a short illness.


It came as a shock to many, coming so soon after the death of her great friend and companion Sister Breda Coman who died on May 15.


Their deaths leave a huge void in our community. Helen was born in Fedamore, County Limerick on October 12th 1938 to Patrick and Mai Kennedy.
She attended Fedamore National School before completing her secondary education in St. Joseph’s Secondary School in Doon.


Her call to religious life came soon after and she made her First Profession at the Mercy Convent in Doon in October 1959 and her Final Profession in October 1962.


Helen completed her training as a Domestic Science teacher at Sion Hill in Dublin and then went on to teach in Doon and Tipperary Town. 1980 saw her appointed as Principal in New Inn before coming to Templemore in 1984 as Principal of the Girls Secondary school.
She was deeply involved in the amalgamation process in 1985 when Scoil Mhuire joined forces with Templemore CBS to form Our Lady’s with Helen as its first Principal.
She remained in that role until her well-earned retirement in 1992. She remained in that role until her well-earned retirement in 1992.


She then served as chaplain in the school where her support for the students and their families especially in difficult and tragic circumstances was much appreciated. Her experience as a school principal and her devotion to education ensured valuable contributions in her service over a number of years on the Boards of Management of St. Joseph’s N.S., St. Colmcille’s N.S. in Templemore and the Cistercian College, Roscrea.


Sr. Helen loved nature and found great joy in her daily walks in the Town Park. She took a keen interest in all sporting activities, especially in the exploits of Our Lady’s teams.


As a proud Limerick woman, she took immense pride in Limerick’s recent success. Helen loved nothing more than to chat with her neighbours and the locals and will be sadly missed on the streets of Templemore.


Her contributions to the parish was immense, organising prayer groups and planning and leading liturgical celebrations, all testament to the depth of her spirituality. Sister Helen was pro-active in establishing the McAuley Parish Centre in what was once St. Anne’s Primary School. She gave valuable service to many diocesan projects and to Our Lady’s shrine in Knock.


Helen was pre-deceased by her parents, sisters Nora and Marie (Sr. Margaret Mary) and her brothers Michael, John and Louis. She is survived by her sister Pauline.


Helen’s funeral mass took place in the Sacred Heart Church, Templemore and she was laid to rest beside Sr. Breda in St. Joseph’s Cemetery. May their gentle souls rest in eternal peace.

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