WEST HARTFORD – Sister Helen (Mary Kieran) Hart, a member of the Sisters of St. Joseph, West Hartford, died on Aug. 13, 2014, at Lourdes Health Care Center.
She was 86 years of age and had been in religious life for 69 years.
She was born on Feb. 7, 1928, in Newton, Mass., a daughter of the late John J. and Josephine (Connolly) Hart. She graduated from St. Augustine School in 1941 and from Mount St. Joseph Academy in 1945.
Accepted into the Sisters of St. Joseph on Oct. 2, 1945, Sister Mary Ellen celebrated her perpetual profession of vows on Aug. 24, 1951.
Sister Helen earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in education from Diocesan Sisters’ College in West Hartford and a master’s degree in history from The Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C.
Sister Helen was principal of St. Mary School in Windsor Locks and, after it closed, she taught in the Windsor Locks public school system for three years. She then was principal of St. Bridget School in Manchester.
In 1991, the Sisters of St. Joseph asked Sister Helen to open Project Hope Inc. in the Charter Oak area of Hartford, where for 10 years the program enabled many people to earn their General Education Diploma. Sister Helen also taught in elementary schools in the dioceses of Bridgeport and Springfield, Mass.
Sister Helen was predeceased by her brother John, her nephew Jack and her sister Clare. She is survived by her religious community, nieces, a nephew, a grandniece and two cousins.
A funeral Mass was celebrated on Aug. 18 in St. Joseph Chapel at the Convent of Mary Immaculate in West Hartford. Burial the next day was in the Sisters of St. Joseph Cemetery in West Hartford.
Memorial donations may be made to the Sisters of St. Joseph, 27 Park Road, West Hartford, CT 06119.