Sister Joan Marie Derry

joan derry

April 24, 1934 ~ September 4, 2022

Born in: San Francisco, California
Resided in: Fremont, California

Sister Joan Marie Derry, a member of the Sisters of the Holy Family for 66 years, died peacefully on September 4, 2022 at the age of 88 at the Sisters motherhouse in Fremont.  Sister Joan was born on April 24, 1934, in San Francisco, California. The daughter of Edward and Helen Derry, she entered the Sisters of the Holy Family from Nativity Parish in Menlo Park on January 6, 1956, at the age of 21.

Sister Joan spent her early years with the Sisters teaching catechism and then directing religious education programs in parishes in the San Francisco Archdiocese. She then worked on a diocesan level in Religious Education in Oakland and San Francisco. In 1976 she started and then served as Associate Director for the Permanent Diaconate Program in the San Francisco Archdiocese. She received a certificate in Spiritual Direction from Loyola University in Chicago in 1987, and then returned to parish ministry in Santa Cruz, San Diego and Capitola. Health issues brought her retirement and return to the Motherhouse in Fremont in May of 2022.

Sr. Joan had a vivacious personality. She enjoyed people and celebratory gatherings. She laughed often and, like her mother, loved a good story to tell and one to hear. She had a keen interest in genealogy and passed on a wealth of research and information to family members. Many people came to her for solace with their difficulties in life. She listened and prayed for many, often asking others to join in her prayers.

Sister Joan’s funeral Mass will be held at 11:00 a.m. on Wednesday, September 14 in the Church of the Nativity in Menlo Park, California. Burial will be at Holy Cross Cemetery in Menlo Park following Mass. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Holy Family Day Home at 299 Dolores Street, San Francisco, CA 94103.

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