Sister Claire Bouchard, RSM – Burlington

Sister Claire Bouchard, RSM (Sr. M. Cletus), 81, of the Sisters of Mercy Northeast Community, Vermont, died unexpectedly at Mt. St. Mary’s in Burlington on Nov. 23, 2013, in her 63rd year of religious life. Sr. Claire was born in Burlington on June 8, 1932, the daughter of Jeanne (Simard) and George Leo Bouchard. She attended Nazareth School and Cathedral High School in Burlington. She also attended Trinity College, Burlington, receiving a BA with a major in Education. Sr. Claire entered the Sisters of Mercy on Aug. 15, 1950, and was professed on Aug. 17, 1953. Frances Warde, the American Foundress of the Sisters of Mercy, said that, “it is a special favor of God to be made teachers destined to train little ones in His knowledge and love.” Sr. Claire took these words to heart over her 63 years in religious life. She taught at Mt. St. Mary’s Cathedral, Christ the King, Mater Christi, and St. Michael’s Elementary Schools and served as principal of St. Michael’s School, Montpelier. She also taught Religious Education in Milton, South Hero, Burlington, Northfield, Hardwick, Barre, Waterbury, Shelburne, South Burlington, and Montpelier. Sr. Claire’s knowledge and expertise in education was shared as she served on the Diocesan Board of Education. Sister also served on the Camp Marycrest Board of Directors, and served as Camp Director for many years. Sister was on the original Marycrest staff and worked in the kitchen for the first two years. It was in these beginning years that the spirit of Marycrest was born and Sr. Claire enriched this spirit as the years went on. She shared her gifts once again as she served as Secretary to the Vermont Regional Community President and Leadership Team, ministered to the Sisters at Mt. St. Mary serving as local administration and ministered as Sacristan for Sacred Heart Chapel, Mt. St. Mary’s. She is survived by her sister, Sr. Cecile Bouchard, RSM; brothers, Raymond “Leonard” Bouchard and wife, Claire, and Brother Fred Bouchard, S.C.; sister-in-law, Patty Bouchard; brother-in-law, Reginald Martin; and by her sisters in religion, the Sisters of Mercy. She was predeceased by her parents, Jeanne (Simard) and George Leo Bouchard; brothers, Jerome Bouchard, Brother Adrian Bouchard, S.C., and Daniel Bouchard; and sister, Mariette (Bouchard) Martin. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to the Sisters of Mercy in support of their ministerial works, c/o the Life and Ministry Administrator, 100 Mansfield Ave., Burlington, VT 05401.

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