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A love of learning and life


Late last year the Sisters of Mercy in Adelaide lost two very beloved members of their community. Sister Anne Waugh died in the Mary Potter Hospice on November 16 and Sister Kathleen Preece died at Bucklands on December 21. Both Sisters spent most of their lives involved in education and had long associations with St Aloysius College.

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Sr Anne Waugh – Born: May 25 1938 | Died: November 16 2020

Anne Waugh joined the Mercy Congregation in 1960, attended Teachers College at Wattle Park and began teaching at Mercedes College in 1965.

After taking final vows in 1968, Anne began her long association with St Aloysius College (SAC). She continued to be involved with the college until her retirement in 1999.

Sr Anne said at her retirement: “I never planned on teaching as a career; it was an accidental accompaniment to becoming a Sister of Mercy, but I feel that I was a natural born teacher (in my heyday)!”

Sr Judith Redden, in her eulogy, commented: “Without a doubt, those who recall being taught by Anne will remember her as a teacher ‘par excellence’.

“Anne remains in our collective memory as a ‘pearl of great price’,” she said.

“Her laughter, quirky sense of humour, her faithfulness, her ability to think outside the square (and to offer surprise responses) endeared her to all of us.”

Sr Anne was passionate about nature and the environment, and had a special love for animals. Her stories about her dog, Tolly, published monthly in a community newsletter, were greatly entertaining.After Tolly, her cat Teddy became her constant companion until her death.

Sr Anne was a good friend to many, and was very supportive of her brothers, Tony and Michael, her sister Caroline, and their partners and children, as they were of her. Anne was 82 when she died.

Sr Kathleen Preece – Born: February 27 1926 Died: December 21 2020

Kathleen Preece was born in Mount Gambier in 1926, the eldest of eight children, and entered the Sisters of Mercy in Adelaide in 1944.

Sr Kathleen began teaching at SAC while studying at the University of Adelaide. From 1958 until 1969 she firstly taught and then became head of Mater Christi College in Mount Gambier.

She then moved to SAC as a teacher, deputy head and finally school councillor.

Sr Kathleen retired from SAC in 2002. During the 32 years she was involved with the college, she had the opportunity to study theology in America.

She was also a valued member of the leadership team of the Sisters of Mercy during a time of great upheaval after Vatican II.

Sr Pat Fox said in the eulogy: “As one of that same team I got a chance to witness and appreciate her insightful ideas and vigorous opinions that were not only innovative but would also consistently take into account the needs of the most disadvantaged.”

At her farewell from the college on her retirement, the acting principal John Konopka said: “Kath has been a remarkable teacher not because of her amazing academic ability, nor because of the huge range of subjects she taught, but because she imparts a love of learning and a love of life to everyone she encounters.”

– Compiled by Sr Mary-Anne Duigan RSM


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