Sister Eleanor Francis Filist, 95, teacher

Sister Eleanor Francis Filist
Sister Eleanor Francis Filist
Posted: December 01, 2013

Sister Eleanor Francis Filist, 95, a teacher in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia, died Monday, Nov. 25, of cardiopulmonary collapse in Assisi House in Aston.

She had been a professed member of the Sisters of St. Francis of Philadelphia for 73 years.

Sister Eleanor Francis, whose original name was Helen Bertha Filist, was born in Philadelphia, where she was a member of St. Ladislaus Parish and a graduate of John W. Hallahan Catholic Girls' High School.

She entered the sisterhood in 1938 and professed her first vows in 1940. She earned a bachelor of science degree in business education in 1955 from Marywood College, Scranton.

Her life's work was teaching in elementary and secondary schools.

During her tenure in the archdiocese, Sister Eleanor Francis taught at Resurrection School in Chester, Hallahan, and St. Stanislaus School in Lansdale.

At various times, she taught in Bethlehem, Pa., Baltimore, Trenton, and Barranquitas, Puerto Rico.

She also served as librarian and secretary at St. Mary School in Schwenksville.

From 1990 to 2011 she volunteered at Assisi House, the religious community's retirement house in Aston, first as a sacristan and later as a mobile librarian. A sacristan takes care of religious objects.

In 2011 Sister Eleanor Francis retired to Assisi House.

"Sister Eleanor Francis was a gracious, thoughtful, and kind woman," said colleague Sister Ann Marie Slavin. "She loved to read and enjoyed making books readily available for others to enjoy - especially our retired sisters in Assisi House."

She is survived by nieces and nephews.

A Christian wake service at 10:30 a.m. Monday, Dec. 2, will be followed by a viewing, and then a Funeral Mass at noon, at Our Lady of Angels Convent Chapel, 609 S. Convent Rd., Aston.

Burial will be in Our Lady of Angels Cemetery in Aston.

Donations may be made to the Sisters of St. Francis Foundation, 609 S. Convent Rd., Aston, Pa. 19014.


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