Sister Therese Marie Lucassen, educator and principal in Franciscan schools for close to 50 years, died Dec. 10, 2019, at St. Elizabeth Motherhouse, Allegany. She was 92.
Born Aug. 24, 1927, in the Bronx to Lucas and Helen (Nellie) Barrett, Helen Teresa Lucassen attended Sacred Heart School in the Bronx and graduated from Cathedral High School in New York City. Sister Therese attended St. Elizabeth Teacher College in Allegany, receiving a bachelor of science in Elementary Education with a minor in History from St. Bonaventure University. She received her master's of science degree in Education Administration from Duquesne University in Pittsburgh.
Sister Therese entered the Franciscan Sisters of Allegany community on Oct. 4, 1954, was received into the congregation on Aug. 15, 1955, and professed her final religious vows on Aug. 16, 1962. As an Allegany Franciscan sister for 65 years, she lived joyfully her call to reflect God's love and mercy to all with whom she came in contact.
Sister Therese taught in New York, New Jersey, Virginia and North Carolina. She also served as assistant administrator for Perth Amboy Catholic Schools in the Diocese of Metuchen. Following her service to the Diocese of Metuchen, Sister Therese worked as a school secretary at St. Raphael's and taught English as a second language part-time at Martin House Learning Center, both in Trenton, N.J. Sister also volunteered as a eucharistic minister at St. Lawrence Rehabilitation Center, Lawrenceville, N.J.
In 2015, Sister officially retired and was welcomed home to St. Elizabeth Motherhouse in Allegany.
Sister Therese is predeceased by her parents and sisters Nora Fitzpatrick and Mary Puchalski.
A wake service will be held on Friday, Dec. 13, at 6:30 p.m. in the chapel of St. Elizabeth Motherhouse. A funeral Mass is scheduled for Saturday, Dec. 14 at 10:30 a.m. in the chapel. Burial will follow in St. Bonaventure Cemetery, Allegany.