Sr Cathy McVitie pictured at the Mass to celebrate her 70 years of profession


A SISTER who entered religious life during the Second World War has celebrated

70 years of profession Weekend


Sr Cathy McVitie pictured at the Mass to celebrate her 70 years of profession





On July 16th, Feast of Our Lady of Mount Carmel, there was a very special celebration at St Joseph’s Home, Newcastle.  It was the Platinum Jubilee – 70th Anniversary of Profession – of Sister Cathy McVitie of the Society of Marie Reparatrice.  This wonderful occasion marked a life of loving and joyful service given by Sister Cathy, who has spoken of how much she owed to her happy Catholic family, and parents who were very involved in their parish of St Charles, in Paisley, Scotland.

From an early age Sr Cathy felt drawn to Religious Life, and at the age of 20 entered the Society of Marie Reparatrice in 1942, during the war.  She entered in Chiswick, then went to Limerick in Ireland for her novitiate.  After her profession she came to Newcastle, where our Sisters arrived in 1903, establishing their community in Osborne Road.  Looking back over her life of many years now, Sr Cathy recalls the many places where she has lived and served so many people, developing a real gift for pastoral work in parishes: St Ninian’s Parish in Edinburgh, where Fr Jock Dalrymple was PP; Wootton Bassett near Swindon, where she also did pastoral visits to RAF Lyneham; Kilmarnock in Ayrshire, Scotland.  A long cherished desire to serve God in the missions abroad was fulfilled when she was asked to go to our community in Nairobi in the 1980s, with also a short time spent in our Uganda mission.  This opportunity brought much happiness to Sr Cathy.

Some years later Sr Cathy returned to Newcastle, where she once again offered generous pastoral work in a parish- English Martyrs – with visits to many families whom she helped in their faith journey.  She worked with Fr Swales and Fr McCourt.  As she grew older and her health was not so good, Sr Cathy found a new home in St Joseph’s run by the Little Sisters of the Poor, where she remains happy and settled.

It was in St Joseph’s that we had the great joy of sharing with Sr Cathy the 70th anniversary of her profession.  Her friend of many years – Fr Adrian Dixon – came to celebrate the Mass on July 16th, with all the Sisters of Marie Reparatrice in the Newcastle area present, together with Maria, Sr Cathy’s dear friend from English Martyrs, a volunteer at St Joseph’s Home.  The Little Sisters of the Poor made us so welcome, and prepared a festive meal for us all to share.  This was truly a joyful occasion, a day of thanksgiving for so many blessings bestowed on Sr Cathy over these many years of loving service of God and the people whose lives she touched, and who are remembered so faithfully in prayer.


Published in the "Northern Cross" Diocesan Newspaper of the Diocese of Hexham and Newcastle

(Written by Sr. Barbara Carroll smr)