OUR sisters of mercy

Since its inception, Mercy Medical Center has been blessed by the service and dedication of the Sisters of Mercy. Over the years the Sisters have served in a wide range of roles in support of the hospital and its mission. The stories below offer some insight into the individual journeys of the Sisters who currently serve the patients, families and staff of Mercy Medical Center.

Sister Helen Amos, RSM

Executive Chair, Board of Trustees

I was born and raised in what is sometimes called The Deep South, in Mobile, Alabama. When my older sister, Pat, came to Baltimore for college (and to Mercy Hospital for Medical Technology training), my family thought she came home with a strange accent.

The Sisters of Mercy taught me through elementary and high school. As I became friends with many of my teachers, particularly those who guided the school newspaper, the glee club and sports, I decided to join the community.

I’ve been a teacher and an administrator, including seven years as President of the Sisters of Mercy. In the latter role I visited the Sisters working outside the U.S., in Jamaica, Guyana, Honduras, Belize and Argentina. Observing the works of Mercy in these cultures was an unforgettable experience.

Of the four vows we make as Sisters, the vow of obedience has changed most dramatically in its meaning for me (and all of us) over the years. What it means to me today is searching daily for how to be the best instrument of peace, mercy and justice I can be. God’s work on earth really is our work.

My work here at Mercy is motivated first of all by the patients — their needs, their gratitude for every act of caring we give them, even if it’s only a smile. At the same time, I am moved by the spirit of this great house of Mercy that lives in our incomparable co-workers throughout the organizations.

 

Sister Elizabeth Anne Corcoran, RSM

Assistant to the President: Hospitality

My first contact with the Sisters was at birth, right here at Mercy Hospital! And through my aunt, Sister Mary Veronica Daily. As a student in the School of Nursing, I decided to enter the community and Sister Mary Thomas Zinkand was my mentor during the discernment period and a true friend until the day she died.

The Sisters’ love and fairness to all persons attracted me: I could see their love for the very ill. I feel it is a privilege to care for God’s sick people, and for me it is always an honor to be with a dying patient.

Other than Mercy Medical Center, I have served at St. Joseph’s Hospital in Atlanta for nine years. At Mercy I have been the nurse recruiter, director of Nursing, and vice president for Nursing and Related Areas. I now work in Hospitality Services in the Conference Center and Lobby area, and am moderator for the Alumnae Association. I have loved every assignment over the years, and hope to be part of the Hospitality Services for years to come.

In everyday life the most significant vow for me has been the vow of Service to the poor, sick and uneducated. Each day I see where, as a Sister of Mercy, I am able to assist visitors, patients and staff who need help and guidance. Each time that happens, a feeling of satisfaction comes over me.

 

Sister Fran Demarco, RSM

Director, Mission Services and Minister to Employees

I was born into a large Italian-American family in Baltimore. Though I had only two sisters, many members of my extended family lived with us in our four bedroom, one bathroom row home. There was an innate sense of community in the neighborhoods of West Baltimore at that time. A large population was Catholic. We attended the same parish school and Sunday Mass together; the parish church was the focal point of our lives. My two sisters married two brothers--childhood sweethearts from elementary school. Lucky for me there wasn’t a third brother!

After high school, I worked at the Social Security Administration for about two years realizing all the while that I was looking for something “more” in my life. I had maintained relationships with the Daughters of Charity and School Sisters of Notre Dame, who had been my teachers, but it was a Sister of Mercy who worked in the Inner City who influenced my final decision to become a Sister of Mercy. I admired her love and commitment to the poor with whom she served. Over the years I have never regretted that choice.

I received my B.A. and M.A. from Mt. St. Agnes College, Baltimore and Duquesne University in Pittsburgh respectively. Later I earned an M.A. in Theology at St. Mary’s Seminary, Baltimore. I have been an elementary school teacher, principal and Pastoral Associate in two Baltimore parishes as well as Pastoral Director of several Mercy sponsored programs and institutions. Ultimately the combination of these ministries and my studies guided me to the position I hold today at Mercy Medical Center. I am Minister to Employees with special emphasis on Mercy’s mission. In this position I am able to provide spiritual and emotional support to employees and staffs of the hospital: “Care for the Caregivers.” The mere existence of my job confirms that the Mercy spirit is alive and in practice. Mercy Medical Center's mission is far more than a framed document on a wall: it is alive in the employees and in the decisions made at the hospital. 

 

Sister Joan Donahue, RSM

Women's Center Concierge

Born  in the "City of Brotherly Love" (Philadelphia), I was the youngest of five children reared in a strong Catholic family and neighborhood. Our entire schooling was deeply rooted in the Archdiocesan System; hence, while attending the largest Catholic girls' high school in the City, I  had the privilege of being taught by several women religious of varied congregations, one of which was the Sisters of Mercy. 

The generosity of "presence" to young women coupled with their joyous spirit and deep spirituality made a lasting impression on me.  It was these qualities which I found in the women of Mercy that deeply influenced my decision to enter the Congregation.

Since then the varied ministries of teacher, administrator, principal and pastoral associate have afforded me tremendous opportunities of service. From the ice huts of Alaska to the adobe homes of Mexico; from rhea Indian reservations of the great Northwest to the historical city housing the Declaration of Independence and, also, to the beautiful Flemish country side of Louvain, Belgium --- these cherished assignments continue to motivate me to "wonder at the marvels of God and at what might yet lay ahead."  

The vow of service significantly impacts my life's journey as I continue to treasure the persons, places, and events to which I am exposed. These have now brought me to Mercy Medical Center, where I previously ministered as a pastoral person in Outpatient Oncology.  Presently, I minister as Concierge in The Weinberg Center for Women's Health and Medicine, where, daily, I encounter so many women who beautifully embrace the serious illness afflicting them.  It is here, at Mercy, that I can honestly say that I have come full circle. The journey has been most exciting, extremely challenging, spiritually rewarding and all too brief.  I continue, daily, to be empowered by the charisma of Mercy.  Indeed, God's call to me has been special..."I have called you by name, you are mine..."

 

Sister Madonna Gies, RSM

Staff Educator (part-time)

Baltimore was my home from birth through my early days as a Sister. I first met the Sisters of Mercy at Cecilia’s School in Baltimore. They were caring, loving women and I wanted to be like them and to become one of them. Their example was a strong influence in my life.

After years of training as young Sister I was assigned to Holy Trinity School in Washington; St. Mary’s in Rockville; St. John’s in Florida; Assumption in Atlanta; St. Ignatius and Our Lady of Sorrows in Alabama; Immaculate Heart of Mary, Shrine of the Sacred Heart, and Mount Washington Country School in Baltimore; and Sacred Heart in Glyndon. I was principal of four different schools for 23 years and a teacher for 33 years. I have been teaching at Mercy Medical Center since 1996 and taught at Stella Maris from 1997 to 2004.

In 1987 I volunteered to move to an extremely poor region in Appalachia, Virginia, where I remained for nine years. Those years were the greatest for me! I worked in prison ministry, gave numerous tutor training workshops, participated in civic community issues, board memberships, and direct service to the poor. While there, I became certified as a nursing assistant and as a hospice caregiver for the terminally ill.

My vow of service to the poor, sick and uneducated has always been highly significant for me. The need for education is everywhere, and I am motivated each day by my contacts with my students. I have never lost my love for people or my enthusiasm for teaching.

 

Also serving the patients and families of Mercy Medical Center are Sister Mary Harper, RSM, and Sister Annella Martin, RSM.

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