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Sr Mary Weigers

List of Deceased Sisters

Date of Death 08/03/2022

        Born: 17 April 1930

        Professed: 15 August 1952

        Deceased: 7 March 2022


Mary Wiegers was born into a large, farming family in Humboldt, Saskatchewan, in Canada, on April 17th, 1930. She graduated from high school in 1948, and, two years later entered the Missionary Sisters of the Society of Mary in Bedford, Massachusetts, USA on February 11th, 1950. She made her first vows on August 15th, 1952.  After profession she was sent to the SMSM community on Isabella Street in Boston for community service.

In June 1953, Sr Mary Alphonsus (as she was then known) was missioned to Jamaica and sent to Hansen Home, where she had a variety of duties: nursing, teaching, kitchen duties and office work. She was back in the USA at the time of her perpetual vows, on August 15th, 1958, and was living in Bedford. Two years later, in 1960, Sr. Mary was once again assigned to Isabella St, in Boston. In April 1961, she moved to the Framingham community, where she served as the local bursar.

On March 1st, 1962, Sr Mary began her “Second Novitiate” in Lowell, Massachusetts.[1] From September 1962 to 1966 she served at our new community at 62 Newton St in Waltham as Bursar, Driver and Maintenance Person.

From September 1966 to May 1967, Sr Mary was in Antigonish, Canada, to study for a Diploma in Social Leadership at St Francis Xavier University.  She was missioned to Peru and by July 1967 she was at Language School in Lima. In November she was missioned to Chulucanas and served as the Bursar for the Food Program. In June 1969 she was transferred to Callao, Peru and served as a teacher.

From May 1970 to July 1976, Sister served as the Coordinator of the SMSM community in Intuto, Peru.  Returning to the USA for her home visit in May 1976, she was also asked to remain for three years to serve as the Mission Bursar.

Returning to Peru in 1980, Sr Mary was appointed to Frias (1980), then to Chulucanas (1983), and later to Jesus (1985). In mid 1990 it was again time for a home visit to the USA and Canada and she then returned to Peru in 1991.  In 1994 she had another home visit and also worked with the Mission Co-op collections before returning to Peru in October.

Sr. Mary was asked to help with Mission Co-ops in USA again in 1997,2001,2003, and 2006. No doubt her ability to communicate her actual experience in Peru and the needs of the people, was a great asset in doing the fund-raising needed to keep our missions going.

On February 2nd, 2012, Sr Mary celebrated her diamond jubilee (60 years) of religious life in Peru. But 6 months later, she was not well and was hospitalized for tests. By November 2013 it was decided that she had to stay in the USA for the medical care that she needed.

All of these “facts” of Sister’s life, reveal a woman of great generosity and dedication to her missionary call.  But those who knew her best were, no doubt, the Sisters who were with her during some of the 46 years she served in Peru.  One of these, Sr Susan Scherkenbach, shared her “Words of Remembrance” towards the end of our funeral liturgy.  

Susan spoke of the fact that Mary’s father had died when Mary was a very young child, and her mother was left to “care for” a large family and a large farm in western Canada. This was a great influence on Mary’s life: it was reflected in the way Mary cared for the people and places in which she lived over the years.  Susan recounted that:

In Peru, Mary’s ‘caring for’ was especially reflected in her compassion and attention to those who were sick.  Although she was not a ‘trained nurse’, Mary acquired skills and experience in attending the sick in the places in which she was missioned: Intuto in the Amazon jungle, Jesus, in the mountains, and Las Flores in Lima. In Intuto, a village without a doctor or permanent health worker, Mary delivered babies.  She often lacked basic instruments and sometimes at night, in a simple home with only a kerosene lamp, she became the midwife.  Mary would keep vigil for hours with the sick and the dying.  In Jesus, a town up in the Andes with many small surrounding villages to attend to and no parish priest, Bishop Jose Dammert must have had Mary’s ministry in mind when he allowed the Sisters to have the chrism oils in their chapel to be used in anointing the sick and the dying.

Susan, who also lives at Marillac, recounted the peacefulness of Mary’s last days:

Mary had entered the “contemplative” time of her life. Her TV was permanently turned on to the channel with the Blessed Sacrament showing in the chapel and outside her living area she had a beautiful view of the woods.

Mary’s room during her final days there was filled with peace. Then the moment came when God, her loving parent, lifted her up and carried her HOME.


Gratefully in Mary,


Sister Helen Muller, smsm     Sister Virginia Fornasa, smsm

Regional Leader                    Communications Secretary

[1] This was the forerunner of what we now call our “Long Term Spiritual Renewal.”