Vale Sister Anne Crowe SGS

Annie Therese Crowe (known as Anne) was born in Koroit on July 21, 1916, the sixth of nine children to Patrick and Anne (née McGrath) Crowe.

When Anne was only two years of age the family moved to Swan Hill and when she grew to school age she began her education at the State schools of Murraydale and Tyntynder South, and at St Killian’s School when the family moved briefly to Bendigo.

Anne’s secondary school studies began at Swan Hill High School before periods of boarding school at Star of the Sea, Gardenvale and finally at St Brendan’s Coragulac. At this latter school she recalls that Sister Mary Catherine Teresa Mercovich became a powerful influence in her life.

After completing the Intermediate Certificate and studies in commercial subjects, Anne spent some years giving support on the family farm, and then became sewing mistress at the Tyntynder Central State School. Her social life was not neglected and was filled with tennis, horse riding, dancing and the gathering of friends around the family piano.

In 1936, however, she responded to the call to religious life and on January 13 of that year began her formation for that life at Mount St Benedict Novitiate, Pennant Hills. She was then known as Sister Mary Pascaline, but many years later would revert to Anne, her baptismal name.

Following her profession of vows on January 4, 1939 and a period of preparation for acquiring her Certificate of Teaching, Anne embarked on her ministry of teaching, which would continue for over 40 years, and would take her to primary and secondary schools in Queensland, New South Wales and Victoria, including some years on her home soil of Koroit.

After completing her service in the classroom, Anne found new avenues for her energy – as Religious Education Coordinator at St Luke’s Lalor, Hostel Manager at Polding Villa and parish visitation.

In the latter years of her long life she was a member of the Thornbury community where, among other things, her culinary skills were greatly appreciated. During this time she visited the sick in the parish and happily cultivated her beautiful garden.

Anne’s recorded memories of her many years in Good Samaritan life and mission reveal a happy, adventurous, enthusiastic, zealous, pastoral spirit, all summed up in thanksgiving for “the wonderful life I have had in the Lord’s service as a Sister of the Good Samaritan”.

Anne’s final years were spent at Villa Maria, Bundoora where she continued her pastoral ministry by visiting her fellow residents every afternoon. When Anne reached 100 years of age she was thrilled and honoured to join other centenarians for a luncheon hosted by the Governor of Victoria at Government House.

Anne is remembered with love and gratitude by her numerous nieces and nephews and their families and by all her Good Samaritan Sisters for her wise and pastoral presence. Anne was a loving family member and a true Good Samaritan woman with a great missionary spirit.

Published on October 26, 2017.