Nora, born on March 6, 1942, was a woman of welcoming heart. Some of it was genetic – she was born into a loving Irish family in Astoria, NY. It was a household where people gathered and extended family came and went; and her father’s business and family livelihood was in hospitality.
But a great deal of her gift of hospitality came from her intentional commitment to Presentation spirituality and living the spirit of the vow of poverty she made at her profession. While the vow of poverty concerns renunciation of money and accumulation of unnecessary material goods, the spirit of the vow calls us to be unconcerned about things so that we might be free to serve others - “to share with others our time, out talent, our very selves.” In doing so, Nora was about more than just the mechanics of graciousness and hospitality.
She went beyond the conversations, the letters, the visits – she opened her heart to embrace all of us and to make the personal connections that brought so many into her life in a meaningful way. The time and attention she gave to each friend, one at a time, was a testament to her great generosity. That is her gift that we all celebrate and treasure.
The valiant woman was devoted to her family: Nora was a loving and attentive daughter to Mae and John and a devoted sister to Catherine and Daniel and their families. She loved to share her family, as well as the many aunts, uncles and cousins both in the United States and Ireland, with her Presentation family and with her extended family in ministry.
The valiant woman was diligent in her labors: In whatever Nora did, she aimed for perfection. The same ethic she brought to her work as an educator, she gave to the ordinary tasks.
Beneath the small frame and gentle exterior, there was great strength and determination to pursue the truth and do the right thing – and hold herself and others accountable. It was that same virtue and grit that she brought to bear upon the work of battling cancer. She fought valiantly for five years, bearing the chemotherapy treatments as one more thing to fit into her schedule. Like everything else she did, Nora gave it her all until God called her to her rest on March 3, 2004.
The valiant woman was dependent on God: Sr. Nora drew her strength and purpose from her relationship with God and shared it with us. We thank our good and gracious God for this gift of Nora Mary Cronin, PBVM.
History of Ministry:
1962-1963 Mount St. Joseph Academy
1963-1965 St. Andrew School, Clifton NJ
1965-1966 St. Paul School, Yonkers
1966-1979 John S. Burke High School, Goshen NY
1971-1977 St. Albert Seminary, Middletown NY
1979-2001 Loyola High School, New York City
2001 NY Province of Society of Jesus
The following memories of Sr. Nora Cronin are taken from the Eulogy given at her funeral by Sr. Dale McDonald: