Dominican Sister of Peace Loretta (Mary Neil) Sullivan (87) died at the Mohun Health Care Center, Columbus, OH, on January 17, 2019. One of two children, she was born in 1931 to Loretta Korn and Cornelius Sullivan of New Haven, CT. She attended St. Mary’s High School and was attracted to religious life by the joyful spirit of the teachers that she encountered there. She entered religious life in 1954.
Sr. Loretta earned a Bachelor of Science in Education from Ohio Dominican University and was an enthusiastic elementary and secondary school teacher in Connecticut, New York, and Ohio. She returned to her studies at St. Mary’s Notre Dame in 1968, earning a Master of Arts in Scripture.
In 1968, Sr. Loretta was asked to combine her two passions – teaching and theology – to develop a religious education program for St. Mary’s parish in Marietta. She was eager to enter this relatively new area in the Church and continued her studies to be ready to serve those in her care. She earned her Master of Arts in Sacred Theology from Yale Divinity School and her certificate of Clinical Pastoral Education from Bridgeport Hospital, Bridgeport, CT.
Sister Loretta also served in the Religious Education office of the Archdiocese of Hartford, as Associate Vicar of Religious, and as the first Director of Human Resources for her founding congregation, St. Mary of the Springs.
In 1993, true to the Dominican charism, Loretta began to offer pastoral care, counseling, and therapeutic recreational opportunities to marginalized populations in 1993. She took particular joy in her work as chaplain for the State of Connecticut Department of Corrections, sharing God’s love with those who often had no hope.
Sr. Loretta returned to Columbus in her later years, where she was known for her gentle smile and kind, giving spirit. She also enjoyed sharing stories of her family, who she loved very much, with the Sisters at the Columbus Motherhouse and, later, at the Mohun Care Center.
Sr. Loretta Sullivan was preceded in death by her parents, Cornelius and Loretta Korn Sullivan. She is survived by her brother Neil, her niece, Mara, nephew, Neil and two grandnephews.
A Vigil of Remembrance Service was held at the Dominican Sisters of Peace Motherhouse Chapel, Columbus, Ohio on Friday, January 25. The funeral liturgy was held on Saturday, January 26. Sr. Loretta was interred at St. Joseph Cemetery in Columbus, OH.
Memorial gifts in Sr. Loretta Sullivan’s memory may be submitted securely online or sent to the Dominican Sisters of Peace, Office of Mission Advancement, 2320 Airport Drive, Columbus, OH 43219.