Sr. Rita Bérard, DHS
August 2, 1921—October 8, 2009
Sr. Rita Bérard, DHS, 88, a member of the Daughters of the Holy Spirit, died on Thursday, October 8, 2009 at the Holy Spirit Health Care Center, where she had been in residence since March of 2000.
Born on August 2, 1921, in Websterville, VT, she was the daughter of the late Dosithée and Carrie (Dupré) Bérard. Sr. Rita entered religious life in 1937 and made her religious profession at the Motherhouse in St. Brieuc, France on August 22, 1940. She was then known as Sr. Anne Rita.
After her religious profession, Sr. Rita was assigned to Landivisiau and St. Anne d’Auray in France where she performed domestic duties. After spending two years as an internee in Vittel, France during World War II, she returned to the United States in 1944 and began teaching assignments in Swanton, VT; as well as Jewett City, and Waterbury, in Connecticut.
She went to California in 1957 and served there until 2000. While there she received a B.A. from Dominican College, San Raphael, CA and an M.A. from Holy Name College, Oakland, CA. She then served in elementary schools in Fairfax; West Sacramento and Stockton as well as Marin Catholic High School, Kentfield—all in California. Her last 8 years were spent at the Daughters of the Holy Spirit Convent in Patterson, CA. where she was in semi retirement.
Survivors include one sister, Agnes Laliberté, of Barre, VT; and several nieces and nephews; grandnieces and grandnephews.
Calling hours at the Provincial House chapel will be on Sunday, October 11, 2009 from 6:00pm to 8:00pm with a Prayer Service at 7:15pm. A Mass of Christian burial will be held on Monday, October 12, 2009 at 11:00 am at the Provincial House chapel followed by burial at St. Mary Cemetery, Putnam, CT.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Daughters of the Holy Spirit Retirement Fund, 72 Church St., Putnam, CT 06260. Gilman Funeral Home, 104 Church St., Putnam, CT has been entrusted with arrangements.