To the end of her life, while it was in her power, Anne Rhoddy maintained a strong bond with the place of her birth, Rozelle, and with the Church and parish life that was part of her childhood and teenage years.
Named Annie Margaret at her birth on July 17, 1920, she was the third of five children born to Joseph Rhoddy and Rosetta Scullin.
Anne received all her education from the Sisters of the Good Samaritan at Rozelle, Manly and Glebe Point. While at St Joseph’s High School Rozelle, Anne also completed a course at the Southern Cross Commercial College. She was awarded an Honours Certificate at the Commercial Examinations 1934, having secured “the highest possible mark obtainable”.
One of Anne’s fondly remembered mentors, Sister Mary Patrick Joseph Kennedy, arranged for Anne to complete her education up to Leaving Certificate, which she gained in 1936 at St Scholastica’s College, Glebe Point.
It was on July 2, 1937 that Anne joined the Good Samaritan Novitiate at Pennant Hills, beginning this new phase of her life as Sister Mary Cleophas. Alongside her formation for religious life, Anne was engaged as a Student-Teacher at St Joachim’s School, Thornleigh. Following her profession of vows on January 4, 1940, she spent two further years at St Joachim’s before moving to St Scholastica’s where she gained her registration as a teacher.
This set her upon a long career of teaching and in related fields of education, a distinction that was honoured when, in 1991, she was awarded a Certificate of Service by the Sydney Archdiocesan Catholic Schools Board and the Catholic Education Office, Sydney, in recognition of and appreciation for 50 years of dedicated service to Catholic education. These years also included periods of added responsibilities as Principal, Superior of the local community, and Provincial Superior.
Anne’s latter years were spent at Bethany Hostel, Eastwood, a place familiar to her from her own ministry, from 1994 to 1999, to the sisters resident in the Nursing Home on this site, and finally at Clermont Nursing Home, Ryde.
Anne will be remembered for her fidelity to and love for the Congregation. She will also be remembered lovingly for the order and precision she brought to all her offices and duties.
On the occasion of celebrating the Golden Jubilee of her religious profession she wrote: “The difficulties of the past 50 years fade into insignificance when compared with the joys and blessings lavished upon me at every turn, eliciting from me, in Polding’s words ‘a loud, loud, call for thankfulness'”.
Anne departed this life in peace on Thursday February 28, 2013 at Clermont Nursing Home where she had experienced great care and love.
She is survived by her nieces, nephews and their families and remembered with love and gratitude by all her Sisters of the Good Samaritan.