Thursday, May 06, 2021


Mary Louise Murphy


Sister Corde Maria Murphy, O.P. (Mary Louise Murphy), 82, died peacefully in the hospital after a brief illness. She was a solemnly professed nun at the Dominican Monastery of Our Lady of Grace, North Guilford.

Sr. Corde Maria was born in Boston, Mass. April 7, 1938. She received first Holy Communion June 8, 1945, and was confirmed in May 1950.

Sr. Corde Maria earned her BA and BFA in art from Emmanuel College, Boston, where she also minored in English and History. After graduation, she entered the Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur, an active religious order dedicated to Christian education.

As a religious sister, Sr. Corde Maria continued her art studies at Boston University, Syracuse University, and the University of Notre Dame in South Bend, Ind. The University of Notre Dame awarded her an MA for her thesis in batik, a method of printing cloth using wax patterns.

Sr. Corde Maria loved her vocation as a teaching sister, working with students from elementary to college age in general humanities studies as well as in art. She led many study trips to Europe. After nineteen years of teaching, Sr. Corde Maria felt a “call within a call” to the hidden life of a contemplative nun. She entered the Monastery of Our Lady of Grace June 17, 1975, and made solemn profession Sept. 8, 1979. In the monastery, she worked for many years in the departments for liturgical vestments, building maintenance, and printed materials.

Sr. Corde Maria is preceded in death by her parents, Frank and Stella Murphy. She is survived by her brother and sister-in-law, Robert and Patricia Murphy; their children, Robert, Jr., Bill, Dan, and Beth; and many grandnieces and grandnephews.

At this time, a public funeral cannot be planned because of COVID-19 restrictions. Arrangements for a private graveside service in the monastery’s cemetery are being made by Guilford Funeral Home. Memorial donations may be sent to the Monastery of Our Lady of Grace, 11 Race Hill Rd., North Guilford, CT 06437-1099.

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