Catholic Transcript Magazine of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Hartford Connecticut

As we celebrate the 175th Anniversary of the Archdiocese, we look back… on July 20, 1971 when parishioners settled on a site for the new St. Thomas the Apostle Church, Oxford.
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WEST HARTFORD – Sister of Mercy Claire Markham, a daughter of James J. and Agnes V. (Manning) Markham, died on Dec. 6, 2013, at St. Mary Home. She was born in New Haven in 1919, and entered the Sisters of Mercy in 1940. From 1940-49, she taught at St. Patrick School in Waterbury.

After completing her doctorate in chemistry at The Catholic University of America in 1952, she returned to her alma mater, St. Joseph College, as a member of the faculty. She held various positions at the college, including professor of chemistry, dean of the graduate school and director of institutional research, receiving a doctor of humane letters honorary degree in 1989 from the college. She retired as professor emerita in 2000.

Sister Claire also served as undersecretary, State Department of Energy, in the Office of Policy and Management in 1977 and was visiting professor at the Norwegian Institute of Technology in Trondheim, Norway, and the University of California, Berkeley, in 1967-68. She was the author of numerous research articles and research projects. Among her awards are the Woman of the Year Award, West Hartford Business and Professional Women, in 1961; and a citation, along with Eleanor Roosevelt, from the Service Bureau of Women in 1962.

She was predeceased by her brothers James, Charles and Richard, and her sister, Jean. Sister Claire is survived by her sister, Elizabeth M. Markham of West Hartford; two sisters-in-law, Rosemary Markham, of Orange, and Dorothy Markham, of Bloomfield, N.Y.; several nieces and nephews and their families; and her sisters in the Mercy Community.

A funeral Mass of Christian Burial was held Dec. 12 in the Connor Chapel of Our Lady, located on the campus of the University of St. Joseph. Burial was in St. Mary Cemetery in West Hartford.

alertAt the Spring Assembly of the U.S. bishops, Cardinal Joseph Tobin suggested that a delegation ofbishops go to the border to see for themselves what was happening to newly arrived immigrants, families and children. On July 1 and 2, Cardinal Daniel DiNardo, president of the U.S. bishops conference, and five other bishops conducted a pastoral visit to the diocese of Brownsville, Texas. Stops included Mass at the Shrine of Our Lady of San Juan del Valle with the community, a visit to anHHS/OBR Shelter and Mass for the families there, a visit to the Customs and Border Patrol processing center in McAllen, TX, and a press conference at the end of their visit. Catholic News Service accompanied the bishops on their border trip. 

  1. Backgrounder and analysis of the bishops’ trip to the border: Cardinal DiNardo told CNS, “You cannot look at immigration as an abstraction when you meet” the people behind the issue.
  2. At final press conference, Cardinal Daniel Dinardo said the church was willing to be part of any conversation to find humane solutions because even a policy of detaining families together in facilities caused “concern.”
  3. Bishops serve soup to immigrant families at a center run by Catholic Charities and listen to their stories. Scranton Bishop Joseph Bambera said he found hope in hearing the people in the room talk about what’s ahead. They didn’t speak of making money but of finding safety for their children, he said, driven by “the most basic instinct to protect your family.”
  4. At an opening Mass he Basilica of Our Lady of San Juan del Valle-National Shrine near McAllen, Texas, Bishop Daniel Flores of Brownsville told Massgoers, “The bishops are visiting here so they can stop and look and talk to people and understand, especially the suffering of many who are amongst us,”

A delegation of U.S. bishops goes on a fact-finding mission at the U.S.-Mexican border to learn more about Central American immigration detention.

Following their visit to an immigrant detention center, U.S. bishops said they are even more determined to call on Congress for comprehensive immigration reform.