Mary Therese McNamara
(1931 – 2022)
Mary (“Mac”) McNamara, staff member of Madonna House, died peacefully on February 6, 2022, at Our Lady of the Visitation, St. Mary’s, Madonna House, Combermere.
Mary, the daughter of James and Sara McNamara, was born in Chicago on August 31, 1931, and was baptized at St. Clara’s Catholic Church two weeks later. She attended Loretto Academy in Chicago for her secondary school education, and then worked as a stenographer before coming to Madonna House.
In 1957, she read an article advertising the Summer School of Catholic Action at Madonna House in Combermere and decided to come during her vacation time for the week dedicated to Our Lady. She had been pondering about what vocational direction her life would take, and her experience during the summer school led her to want to investigate further.
She became an applicant in January of 1958 and made her First Promises in August of that year. After spending a brief time at Stella Maris House in Portland, OR, she was assigned to Marian Centre Edmonton, where she remained for twelve years, first as a staff worker, then as the Local Director. She also served for two years as the Local Director at Maryhouse, Whitehorse, YK.
By 1977, Mary had returned to Madonna House, Combermere, and was to serve there as head of the office for nearly thirty years. She eventually moved to Our Lady of the Visitation in St. Mary’s, Madonna House, where she spent her final years.
Aside from her office skills, Mary was known for her handicraft ability, especially that of cross-stitch and many of her works were sold in the Madonna House Mission Gift Shop.
Mary was predeceased by her parents and brother. Apart from her Madonna House family, she is survived by two nieces and their families.
The Wake Service and Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated privately for members of the community on Thursday, February 10, and Friday, February 11, with internment at the Madonna House cemetery.
Madonna House would like to thank nurses Kaitlyn and Kennedy, Dr. Malinowski and the other doctors in the Emergency Room of St. Francis Memorial Hospital for their great efforts in fulfilling Mary’s desire to die at home in Madonna House. Further thanks go to the caregivers who served her so ably and willingly over the past years.