Sister Mary Fidelma, CSSF, 101, a Felician Sister for 83 years, died in the Blessed Mary Angela Convent, Buffalo, on May 11, 2020. The former Sophie Kakol was born on October 15, 1918 in Olean. She was a member of Transfiguration Parish in Olean. She entered the Immaculate Heart of Mary Province of the Felician Sisters in Buffalo, on July 6, 1936 and professed perpetual vows on August 12, 1944.
Sister Fidelma furthered her education at Medaille (Mount St. Joseph Teachers) College, Buffalo, where she earned a Bachelor of Science in Education degree. She also held a Master of Science in Education degree from State University of New York College at Buffalo.
Sister Fidelma began her teaching ministry as a Kindergarten instructor at Our Lady of Czestochowa School, North Tonawanda and also taught grades four through six in many Catholic elementary schools throughout the Diocese of Buffalo. In 1950, Sister Fidelma taught grades three and four at her home parish of Transfiguration. She returned to teach in Buffalo, and in 1957 was assigned to teach grade five at Transfiguration School, Rome, NY. In 1958, Sister Fidelma served as Assistant Director of the Novitiate at Holy Name of Mary Convent, Mississauga, Ontario, Canada. At several places of ministry, she also served as organist.
Upon her return to the Buffalo Diocese in 1959, she spent the next 16 years as a teacher at various schools, St. Amelia, Tonawanda; Queen of Martyrs, Cheektowaga; Coronation of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Buffalo; St. Andrew, Sloan and St. John De LaSalle, Niagara Falls. In 1968, while at Coronation of the Blessed Virgin Mary School, Buffalo, Sister Fidelma was also principal.
In 1975, Sister Fidelma became involved in parish ministry at St. John Kanty Parish, where she served for 12 years. From 1987-2003 she assisted at the Villa Maria Convent office as receptionist. She soon became the director of the Convent office. She had a kind and approachable manner which contributed to comfortable communication with others.
In 2004, Sister Fidelma began serving as receptionist at St. Francis Residence Convent. Due to failing health, she became a patient in the Blessed Mary Angela Care Center, in 2008. During her residence as a patient, she was kind and grateful to others for which she will be fondly remembered.
Sister Fidelma is survived by her sisters, Sister Henriella Kakol, CSSF, and Rita King, as well as nieces and nephews. She was predeceased by her parents, the late John and Josephine (Gnas) Kakol and her brothers, Stanley and Joseph Kakol.
A Memorial Mass will be celebrated for Sister Fidelma at a future date. Interment took place at St. Stanislaus Cemetery on May 13, 2020