© The Society of Saint Francis, 2003
Alison Mary CSF died on 23rd January 2003 and her funeral Eucharist was in Birmingham. She was aged eighty two, and in the fortieth year of her profession in vows.
From a sermon preached at her funeral mass at St Francis House, Birmingham, by Sister Elizabeth CSF
Sister Alison Mary CSF, ‘Allie’, was born
Inspired by the
visits of friars to her homeland, she left employment and country in 1961 and
came to join CSF in
Her travels took her
Described by a friend as ‘a typical Aussie, but a bit over the top’, there was that about Alison which did not resonate with the more reserved and private English temperaments among us; though, knowing other Australians, we might not wish to generalise about any national characteristics. As with any of us, her less acceptable traits arose from her own needs and insecurities and were an exaggeration of reasonable norms. For some, she did not come over well. Others found her easy to talk with, a sympathetic listener interested in their doings, someone who always had time for them and to whom they mattered. At one time she kept up a huge correspondence.
In her later years Alison almost visibly diminished, a cause of great frustration to her. The garden at Birmingham did not lend itself to her talents as she had little understanding of flowering plants(!) but she was happy and faithful in taking Veronica or Lizzie (the dog) for daily walks, if rather determined as to route and timing. About a year ago, and already with some considerable deterioration of co-ordination and function she, who had never been at a loss for words, lost the ability to put a sentence together. After experimental respite care, she moved into a Residential Home close to the sisters. Pneumonia eventually took her to hospital where she died very peacefully. She will be missed. May she rest in peace and rise in glory. f