Sister Cecilia Murphy was a Sister of Mercy for 65 years. She entered the Sisters of Mercy in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, from Holy Family Parish, Latrobe, Pennsylvania, in September 1956 and made her final vows in 1962.
In addition to a Bachelor of Arts from Mount Mercy (Carlow University), a Master of Arts from Manhattanville College, and a Doctor of Philosophy in Historical Theology from the University of St. Louis, Missouri, she studied theology at the University of Muenster in Germany and the University of Louvain in Belgium.
A shy person by nature, Sister Cecilia’s life was marked by 65 years of kind and compassionate service. She taught in various diocesan schools. For more than 20 years, she served at St. Vincent Seminary, Latrobe, as a teacher, academic dean, associate professor in Pastoral Theology, director of Field Education, and chair of several national accreditation commissions. She received several awards in recognition of her service to the church and to education.
As she once described it, Sister Cecilia was “stretched into leadership.” She was elected president of the Pittsburgh community of the Sisters of Mercy in 1974 and served in that capacity until 1982. Sister Cecilia’s smile was the hallmark of her life, particularly in the last weeks and months of her life when verbal communication was difficult.