Aston, PA—Sister Evelyn Marie Hartnett, OSF, 89, (formerly Sister James Michael) died in Assisi House on April 6. She had been a professed member of the Sisters of St. Francis of Philadelphia for 65 years. Sister Evelyn was born in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, where she was a member of Holy Infancy Parish and a graduate of Bethlehem Catholic High School. She entered the congregation in 1949 and professed her first vows in 1951. Sister Evelyn earned a B.S. in English from Mt. St. Mary University in Emmitsburg, Maryland. She ministered primarily in elementary education and in social service work.
Sister Evelyn ministered for 39 years in the Diocese of Wilmington. She taught at St. Mary School, St. John the Beloved School, St. Paul School, and Corpus Christi School. From 1989-2003 she worked with the Ministry of Caring, initially as a staff member of Mary, Mother of Hope House and later as an administrative assistant at House of Joseph II.
Sister Evelyn’s six years of ministry in the Archdiocese of Baltimore included teaching at St. Vincent School in Baltimore and at St. Stephen School in Bradshaw. In the Archdiocese of Washington where she taught for five years, Sister Evelyn taught at St. Bernadette School in Silver Spring and Our Lady of Lourdes School in Bethesda. Additional ministry in education included serving as both teacher and principal at St. Joseph School in Anderson, South Carolina—part of the Diocese of Charleston.
Sister Evelyn began her 12 years of service in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia by volunteering at Assisi House, the congregation’s retirement residence in Aston—a ministry she continued for five years. In 2009 she became a resident of Assisi House and served in prayer ministry there until her death.
All services will be held in Assisi House, 600 Red Hill Road, Aston, Pennsylvania, 19014 on Tuesday, April 12. A Christian Wake Service will be held at 9:30 A.M. followed by viewing. Mass of Christian Burial at will be at 11 A.M. Burial will be in Our Lady of Angels Cemetery in Aston. Sister Evelyn is survived by her sister, Teresa Hartnett; her nieces and nephews, and by her Franciscan family. Donations in her name can be made to the Sisters of St. Francis Foundation, 609 S. Convent Road, Aston, PA 19014.