Sr. Theophane Duggan R.I.P.
Sr. Theophane (Ann) Duggan was born in The Leap, Enniscorthy, Co Wexford 08/08/1919. She entered St John of God Novitiate, Wexford 02/02/1940. First Profession 08/09/1942, Final Profession 06/09/1945.
Having completed teacher training in Hull Teaching College 1943-45, she taught in Trowbridge and also in Bristol. In 1962 she was appointed to London where she remained until her retirement in 1984. She was a dedicated teacher and was held in high esteem by her colleagues and pupils.
Theo, as she was affectionately known, though retired from teaching, quickly spotted an opportunity to continue her mission in London. Having observed the Sister in charge of catering serve meals daily to homeless men, she became involved. This was to become her mission for the next 20 years. It was a seven day commitment as she accepted that if men were hungry on a Monday they would also be hungry on a Sunday! She became a vital link in the lives of these homeless men, many of them with Irish accents, whose lives had been fashioned by emigration and alcoholism. The name ‘Theo’ was often hurled affectionately across the street from one or other of her regulars!
Having spent 42 years in London, due to closure of the Convent there, Theo retired to Kilkenny Convent in 2004. Her retirement was short lived however as again she offered her services in the Altar Bread Department and continued to help there until her recent illness. Theo combined work and play in a very balanced way. She had a deep contemplative approach to life. She loved quiet prayer alone but never neglected community prayer life. She was an avid reader of both spiritual and secular literature and had a vast store of knowledge and wisdom. Her memory was vibrant to the end. Theo was a very reserved person and shunned publicity but her ready wit and sense of humour endeared her to her Sisters in Community.
After a brief illness, endured patiently, she died peacefully 31/12/2008. At her requiem there were many special tributes paid to her. She was interred in Foulkstown Cemetery 02/01/2009. May her gentle soul now rest in peace with her God whom she served so faithfully.