Sister Barbara Harrington (Robert Francis)- 70th Jubilee

Written on: May 10, 2022

Sister Barbara Harrington was born in Buffalo, New York, the eldest of four children. The family lived on the West Side of Buffalo where Barbara attended Holy Angels Grade School and there met the Grey Nuns. She later attended Holy Angels Academy and spent a year at D’Youville College before entering the congregation.

One of her early ministry assignments was as a Spanish teacher at Holy Angels Academy, and then at Cardinal Dougherty High School in Philadelphia and Pius X High School in Atlanta. She holds an MA from Villanova University in Modern Languages.

An opportunity to change ministry came when she received a grant from Catholic Social Services to work with elderly Cubans. This began her many years of service to the Hispanic community in Atlanta both at Catholic Social Services and St. Joseph’s Hospital. She moved with her friend, Sister Carol Bartol, to Kodiak, Alaska, where she served at St. Mary’s Parish while continuing outreach to the Hispanic community on the island.

Barbara presently lives in Buffalo where she worked for several years in the Catholic parishes on the West Side, Holy Angels and Holy Cross. Retirement is not in Barbara’s vocabulary – she continues to offer assistance to her Grey Nun sisters and others who need help of any kind. 


“I look forward to this jubilee celebration so as to share my joy and gratitude with the Congregation and with my family and friends.

My 70 years as a Grey Nun of the Sacred Heart offered me many spiritual and ministerial adventures. Our foundress, Marguerite d’Youville left us a rich legacy. Her life offers a treasure of guidance for ministry and is a model of practical compassion.

During these 70 years, ministry challenged me to grow. I learned from the Grey Nuns at D’Youville College, that “a D’Youville graduate can do anything” so, while my geography changed from Philly to Atlanta to Alaska, my responsibilities were wide-ranging: from teaching to outreach to legal representation to health and social intervention, then to parish administration!

So now, I find myself in Buffalo, semi-retired, making sure the Buffalo Bills win the next Super Bowl (just kidding).”

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