Sister Carol Morrison, R.S.M.


PROVIDENCE — Mercy Sister Carol Mary Morrison, 73, formerly Sister Mary Austina, died July 16 at Mount St. Rita Health Centre in Cumberland. She was a teacher, administrator and pastoral associate.

Baptized Carol J. Morrison in Providence, she was the daughter of the late William G. and Emma (DeMoura) Morrison. She entered the Sisters of Mercy on Sept. 8, 1956 and professed her vows on Aug. 16, 1964. Sister Morrison earned a bachelor's degree from Salve Regina University and a master's degree from the University of Rhode Island.

Sister Morrison taught at various elementary schools in the Diocese of Providence and at the former Mount St. Mary Academy, Fall River, Mass., and St. Mary Academy-Bay View in East Providence from 1964 to 1972.

She began her ministry at St. Patrick Church, Providence, as a guest and retreat director and later as a pastoral associate from 1974 until her death.

She served on the Leadership Team of the Sisters of Mercy of Providence from 1992 to 2000.

Sister Morrison was an advocate for affordable Catholic education for urban youths in the Smith Hill neighborhood of Providence, and planned many student activities at St. Patrick School, Providence.

Sister Morrison was an active supporter of the proposed St. Patrick Academy, scheduled to open in September.

"She [Sister Morrison] was involved in the school and helped lay the groundwork for St. Patrick Academy. Sister Morrison was in the school office almost every morning. She wouldn't let us quit the pursuit of the new school for one minute," said Renee Brisette, administrative assistant at St. Patrick Academy.

Father James Ruggieri, pastor of St. Patrick Church, acknowledged Sister Morrison's contributions to Catholic education. "I believe Sister Morrison was a great educator. She taught adults, gave retreats and was a lifelong educator," he acknowledged.

Sister Morrison was a member of the pastoral and finance councils and school board at St. Patrick's, the Diocesan Pastoral Council and the board of directors of the Bread of Life Schools Consortium.

Anita Watkins, assistant principal of St. Patrick Academy, noted Sister Morrison's love for the Smith Hill neighborhood. "She never used notes when she spoke. She spoke from the heart, loved people and loved the Lord. She helped in the church's soup kitchen and reached out to people in the neighborhood. Sister Carol truly was a Mercy sister," said Watkins on July 21.

She is survived by a sister, Ruth Lynch, of Providence; and a brother, Richard Morrison, of Easton, Pa. Sister Morrison was preceded in death by a brother, William Morrison.

A Mass of Christian Burial was celebrated July 20 in Mount St. Rita Chapel, Cumberland. Burial was in Resurrection Cemetery, Cumberland.