Sister Nancy Drigan

Written on: December 28, 2015


Reflection at Funeral Mass, December 18, 2015

Learn from the heart of the Father the attitudes of love, tender concern and compassion.”

These are the words of St. Marguerite D’Youville.

This is exactly what our friend and sister, Nancy, did, – and love, tender concern and compassion marked her service as a Grey Nun of the Sacred Heart.  She often hid these major sources of her motivation behind a love of finding whatever could be fun-loving in any situation.  Who at D’Youville summer sessions will forget her act with Sr. Connie Walsh as they in their gave their nightly performances as ”Chet and David”?  Who could see a piano if Nancy was within twenty yards without getting ready to sing?

After her twenty very successful years as English teacher at Mother of Divine Providence in King of Prussia, followed by 17 years at Seton Keough High School in Baltimore and work too at St. Joan of Arc, St. Mary’s in Ogdensburg, and Holy Angels Academy in Buffalo, this effective educator very happily completed her career of service by volunteering her many talents to the elderly, becoming the social activities coordinator in the Senior Residence where she lived.  As one person commented, it is impossible to think of Nancy Drigan without getting ready to sing.

She wasn’t at Lafayette Redeemer for four days before she had gathered an enthusiastic crowd of residents about the piano for an hour before dinner.  No one knew that she wasn’t feeling well.  She was thinking only of them.

As Nancy spoke in 2014 on the 60th anniversary of her religious life, she summed up her sense of her call to religious life by saying, “I thank God for the gift of each new day and try my best to emulate St. Marguerite D’Youville, our foundress, who served all in need, no matter how great, little or unusual the need.

And this was how Nancy lived every day of her religious life, having learned from the heart of the Father her attitudes of love, tender concern, and compassion.

Sister Mary Brendan Connors, GNSH

Obituary appeared in the Philadelphia Inquirer:

Sister Nancy Drigan, GNSH (Sister Charles Raphael) died December 15, 2015 at Holy Redeemer Hospital.  Ann Mary (Nancy) was born in Wilkes Barre, PA to John and Teresa Drigan.  She entered the Grey Nuns of the Sacred Heart in 1954 from Mahanoy City where she grew up. This lifelong educator received her BA in English & Spanish from D’Youville College and an MA in Education/ English Education from Temple University.  A dedicated teacher, she served at Mother of Divine Providence, King of Prussia, PA 20 years spread over three different time periods from 1963 to 1989. She taught at Seton Keough High School, Baltimore, MD; other assignments were in Jackson Heights, Ogdensburg and Buffalo, NY. When she “retired” in 2006, she volunteered her many talents to the elderly in a Senior Residence where she lived until her departure to Lafayette Redeemer in December 2015. She continued to be an active participant in Grey Nun affairs even as she enjoyed the leisure time of retirement.

She is predeceased by her parents.  In addition to her religious family she is survived by her sister, Mary T. Peters, niece, Rebecca and cousin, Bernard Mack.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made online by clicking here Grey Nuns of the Sacred Heart, or by mail at this address: 1750 Quarry Road, Yardley, PA 19067-3998. The Funeral Mass at 10:45 AM on Friday, December 18, 2015 in Sacred Heart Chapel at the above address. Burial in Resurrection Cemetery with arrangements by Beck-Givnish Funeral Homes, Inc.

3 thoughts on “Sister Nancy Drigan

  1. Stephen John Neely says:

    Sister Charles Raphael taught me in 1958 She was a Very Kind person. And my best teacher

  2. Craig Borchardt says:

    Was just talking about Sister Nancy with another student last night. We both had a ready story about how funny she was with students. That was more than 30 years ago. Great teacher!

  3. Kathleen says:

    Legions of angels, Nancy! I always remembered you. I always will. Thank you for everything.

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