ASTON, Pa. — Franciscan Sister Ann Marguerite Gildea died Jan. 24 at the age of 85. She was a professed member of the Sisters of St. Francis of Phil-adelphia for 66 years.
Sister Gildea was born Brigid Ann Gil-dea in Mohill, County Leitrim, Ireland, and entered the congregation in 1935. She earned a bachelor’s degree in English from Mount St. Mary University in Emmitsburg, Md., and a master’s degree in elementary education from the Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C. Sister Gildea ministered in elementary education as both a teacher and principal, in social ministry, and in parish ministry. She was a novice at St. Joseph Orphanage in Spokane, Wash., and served in Maryland, Delaware, and South Carolina.
Sister Gildea ministered for 27 years in the Diocese of Charleston. She served as both teacher and principal at St. Paul School in Spartanburg (1948-1956, 1959-1965) and at Our Lady of Peace School in North Augusta (1956-1959, 1965-1971). From 1979-1983 she ministered at Divine Redeemer Parish in Hanahan, and was recognized for her work in parish ministry.
Sister Gildea spent 21 years in the Diocese of Wilmington, Del. She was one of the founding members of Mary, Mother of Hope House, ministering there from 1977-1979. She returned in 1983 and continued her work with the Ministry of Caring until 2002. At various times she served as director of Mary, Mother of Hope House, director of public relations for the Ministry of Caring, and as a volunteer. In 1997 the Ministry of Caring honored her for her work with the poor. In March 2002 she was inducted into the Hall of Fame for Delaware Women, the first woman religious to be awarded this honor.
Sister Gildea served the Archdiocese of Baltimore, Md., for 15 years, teaching at St. Elizabeth School and St. Stephen School, Bradshaw. From 1973-1976 she was principal at SS. Philip and James School.
In 2002 Sister Gildea moved to Assisi House in Aston.
All services were held at the Assisi House on Jan. 27. Burial was in Our Lady of Angels Cemetery in Aston.
Sister Gildea is survived by her sister, Margaret Duffy, and by her Franciscan family. Donations in her name may be made to Franciscan Ministries Foundation, 609 S. Convent Road, Aston, PA 19014.