Mary Stella Stofcik, SCN, 93, died at Vincentian Home, Pittsburgh, Pa, on Wednesday, October 17. She was in the 79th year of her religious life.
Sister Stella was born March 29, 1919, in Webster, Pa. She grew up on a farm and remembers feeding the chickens and delivering bottles of milk with her brothers as they walked each day to St. Dominic School in Donora.
In 1933, Sister entered the convent of the Vincentian Sisters of Charity. (In 2008 the Vincentian Sisters merged with the Sisters of Charity of Nazareth).
Her first assignment, in 1936, was to teach second grade in Southside. Sister Stella taught for 40 years in missions throughout Missouri, Alabama, Pennsylvania and Canada. Sister played the organ in many parishes and enjoyed working with both the children’s and adult choirs.
In 1991 Sister began a new ministry as librarian at Mon Valley High School in Donora for 14 years and then for 4 years at Vincentian High School. Yet another assignment began in 1991 to serve as a driver at the “Motherhouse” and work in the host room. She did this for 10 years and then began her retirement in 2001.
Interacting with others, working any kind of word puzzle, reading the newspaper, going out for rides, watching westerns on TV, and following sports teams were things Sister enjoyed. Her all-time favorite was having ice cream! She had a good sense of humor, a quick wit, and was a deeply prayerful woman.
Although Sister Stella exhibited some early signs of dementia, she never failed to be exceptionally hospitable. Sister said she “tries to take things in stride and trust in God”. She also said that “we work like hell to get to heaven”. She could hardly wait for her time in heaven “so I can go flying around”. Perhaps, as she “flies by”, she will take your special prayers to the throne of God!