Aston, PA—Sister Joan Griffin, OSF (formerly Sister Jamesina), 86, died in Assisi House on January 13. She was a professed member of the Sisters of St. Francis of Philadelphia for 67 years. Sister Joan was born in Liskennett, Croom, County Limerick, Ireland, where she was a member of St. Lawrence Parish in Banogue. She entered the congregation in 1944 and professed her first vows in 1946. Her sisters, Sisters Anthony Consilia Griffin and Anthony Philomena Griffin, also entered the congregation. Both are now deceased. Sister Joan earned a B.S. in Education and an M.A. in Education, both from Seattle University. She ministered primarily in education on both the elementary and secondary level. She received the Schoolmaster of the Year Award in Contra Costa County, California, for 1978-1979 and the St. Bernardine Award for service in the Diocese of San Bernardino in 2006.
Sister Joan began her years in ministry in the Archdiocese of Baltimore. She taught at Our Lady of Mt. Carmel School in Middle River (1946-1952) and Immaculate Conception School, Towson, (1954-1957).
Sister Joan ministered in the Diocese of San Bernardino for 28 years. She taught at St. Thomas School, Riverside (1957-1960) and at St. Edward School, Corona (1981-1991). She was principal of Sacred Heart School in Palm Desert from 1991-2003 and returned there as a volunteer from 2005-2007. From 2004-2005 she volunteered at the Eisenhower Medical Center in Rancho Mirage.
During her nine years in the Diocese of Oakland, Sister Joan served as principal of St. Isidore School in Oakland (1971-1980). She spent another nine years in the Diocese of Seattle where she taught at St. Leo School in Tacoma (1960-1966) and Our Lady of Lourdes School in Seattle (1966-1968). From 1970-1971 she was principal of St. Charles School in Tacoma. Additional ministry experience included teaching at St. Joseph School in Wilmington, Delaware (1952-1954) and Sacred Heart Academy, in Klamath Falls, Oregon (1968-1970).
In 2007 she moved to Our Lady of Angels Convent in Aston, Pennsylvania, and from 2008-2011 she volunteered at St. Thomas the Apostle School in Glen Mills. She moved to Assisi House in 2011 and served in prayer ministry until her death.
All services will be held in Assisi House, 600 Red Hill Road, Aston, on Friday, January 18. A Christian Wake Service will be held at 9:30 A.M. followed by viewing. Mass of Christian Burial will be at 11 A.M. Burial will be in Our Lady of Angels Cemetery in Aston. Sister Joan is survived by two sisters—Bridie Griffin and Christina Harty; a brother, James Griffin; 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.