June 30, 2020
Dear Members of the Mercy High School Community:
It is certainly with mixed feelings that I write to you. There is definitely a sadness in leaving a community I have respected, loved, and worked with for 45 years. To put it simply, I don’t believe there is a more welcoming community than one finds at 1740 Randolph Road!
I have been so blessed for these many years and my overwhelming feeling is one of deep gratitude. I have been truly fortunate to have had the privilege of being at Mercy for so many years. Words cannot really express how grateful I am, but I do want to express this gratitude.
I thank God for calling me to be a Sister of Mercy. It has been a life of joy, gift and fun! I am so grateful for the Sisters with whom I have lived and worked over the years. I thank the Sisters for all the support given to Mercy High School and for claiming it as one of their own! I thank my family, whose support and love has been constant. I thank my parents for instilling in their children a deep sense of faith, of appreciation for gifts received and an expectation that one gives back in service!
I am grateful to the Diocese of Norwich for entrusting this school to the Sisters of Mercy, and for supporting us in so many ways. Thank you, to the late Bishop Vincent Hines, for seeing the need for Catholic secondary education in Middlesex County and for making it happen.
My deepest personal gratitude to Bishop Daniel Reilly, the late Bishop Daniel Hart and Bishop Michael Cote for their support, their presence and especially for their love of our young Mercy women!
My gratitude to the Board of Trustees for their diligence, encouragement, and amazing support of Mercy. They are true Women and Men of Mercy!
Thank you to the Sisters of Mercy for being faithful to Catherine’s vision in accepting the invitation to come to this school 55 years ago, believing that the work of education is sacred work! I add special thanks to S. Rita Garneau, RSM who is retiring this year after many years of faithful service to Mercy in the Finance Office. Her presence and constant smile will be missed!
I thank too, the Xavierian brothers and Xavier faculty for the friendship and collaboration I have treasured over the years. Thank you, Congregation of Notre Dame, for your collaboration over the years. You trained me in high school and for that too, I am forever grateful!
To the parents and grandparents who have entrusted your daughters to us during their formative years, you have my deep gratitude for your support and your sacrifices. I can’t imagine that any Head of School could have nicer parents and grandparents to deal with. Thank you!
To the Mercy administration, faculty and staff, to work in a place for 45 years in collaboration with people who know what it means to be a community, to be family and who embrace the Mercy charism. You have lived Mercy for me and you have so enriched the Circle of Mercy!
And finally, thank you Mercy students for being you – beautiful young women learning to become Women of Mercy – smart – sophisticated, generous, thoughtful, caring, respectful, and classy! You made it a joy to enter the building every day! Thank you – I will miss you!
Mercy alumnae serve the world from birth to grave, and everything in between. They are teaching the uneducated, caring for the sick, helping with legal matters, raising good families, serving the poor in our country and in foreign countries and running businesses. There is not a part of society where Mercy Women do not exert their influence and bring about change. Closer to home many Mercy alums have worked and are currently working at Mercy in important positions and, more importantly, serving as role models to the young students. How special that the President of Mercy High School, Alissa DeJonge, is a Mercy alum! Thank you Alissa, Daniela, Maria, Lori, Lynn, Michele, Annie, Kerri, Janette, Lauren, Jessica, Marie, Jennifer, Cindy, Sue, Rena, Maureen, and Mary-Clare for coming back to your second home!
I conclude with Catherine McAuley’s words – words that hold a special place in my heart and in the hearts of all connected with Mercy education.
“No work of charity can be more productive of good to society, or more conductive to the happiness of the poor, than the careful instruction of women”. Catherine McAuley
With gratitude, prayers and love - Thank you!