Name: Sr. Mary Rosalie Bean
Sister Mary Rosalie Bean, CSJ (formerly Sister Mary Leo), a member of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Chambéry, West Hartford, CT, entered eternal life on July 10, 2022, at St. Joseph Living Center in Windham, CT. She was born in Vally Lee, MD, on September 5, 1943, to the late Joseph Leo Bean and Helen Genevieve (Redman). Sister entered the Community on August 31, 1961, and celebrated her Profession of Perpetual Vows on July 2, 1969. At the time of her death, Sister was 78 years of age and in her 61st year of Religious Life.
Sister Rosalie earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Education from Diocesan Sisters College, West Hartford, CT, a Master's Degree in Education Administration from Central Connecticut State University, and attended the University of St. Joseph, taking courses in Spiritual Direction. In 1991 she received the Child Advocacy Award from North Central Coalition for Children, INC., and in 2015 the Award of Excellence Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) from the Connecticut Department of Emergency Services and Public Excellence Division of Emergency Management and Homeland Security.
Sister Rosalie taught in several schools in the Archdiocese of Hartford and Diocese of Norwich as an educator at heart and an advocate for children's rights. During her teaching career, she served in both the classroom and administrative positions as principal, including St. James School in Stratford and St. Gabriel School in Windsor. Discerning a call to mission, Sister Rosalie went to St. Joseph Sinoe School in Liberia, Africa, in 1973. She loved the adventure and opportunity to apply her special listening skills while challenging students to be and do their best. Raised in a large agricultural family with her 15 siblings, Sister Rosalie felt at home in the vast expanse of Liberia, among families working and living off the land, as did her own family. Unfortunately, illness brought Sister home long before she anticipated.
More teaching assignments awaited Sister Rosalie. She accepted a part-time role as Vocation Director for the Community. Her involvement in the civic community included working with Citizens for a United Windsor and as a consultant for the Religious Education Program at St. Gabriel School. In addition, she collaborated with the Children’s Advocacy Center (CAC) Mental Health Association to raise awareness of the standard of care and increase access to services for traumatized children and their families.
Sister Rosalie loved a good time, high-spirited parties, and country music at its best. No gathering was complete until Sister played her latest country CD and had everyone up on their feet on impromptu dance floors. She had an exceptional sensitivity to the seasoned members of her religious community and believed that everyone lives the mission at every stage of life. Sister Rosalie initiated a program called “Chew the Fat,” an opportunity for her Sisters to gather, reflect on the daily paper and talk together about the world, national, and local happenings. Sister encouraged their daily prayers for the needs of people everywhere.
We wish to thank the nursing staff at Lourdes Center in Wilton and, most recently, St. Joseph Living Center staff for the compassionate care given to Sister Rosalie during her extended last years of illness. We also thank the Daughters of the Holy Spirit in Putnam, CT, for their presence and support of Sister Rosalie, accepting her as another sister-in-community among their own religious sisters who live at St. Joseph’s.
In addition to her Sisters in Community, Sister is survived by her brothers, all living in Maryland: George (and Kathy); Gregory; Andrew; Robert (and Diann); John (and Libby); and Francis (and Gloria). She also leaves her sisters in Maryland: Leona Unkle (and Bennie); Gennie Williams (and Wayne); Joan Sebring (and Dick); and Evelyn Bean. Along with her parents, Sister is predeceased by her sisters Neadurra Ellen (Hall), Lucy Ann, and her brothers Joseph William, David, and Charles Bernard.
Due to the ongoing COVID-19 health conditions and restrictions for licensed facilities, a graveside service will take place on Friday, July 15, at 10:00 a.m. at the Sisters of St. Joseph Cemetery on Ringgold Street in West Hartford. If unvaccinated, please wear a mask. In lieu of flowers, the Sisters of St. Joseph and Sister Rosalie’s family ask that you consider a memorial donation in Sister’s name to the Sisters of St. Joseph, c/o Office of Mission Advancement, 650 Willard Avenue, Newington, CT 06111. Fisette-Batzner Funeral Home, 20 Bonair Avenue, Newington, has care of the arrangements.