Sister Barbara Burdett (formerly Sister Mary Elaine) died peacefully on December 24, 2018, at McAuley Hall Health Care Center, Watchung, NJ. She was the daughter of Harry and Eleanor Burdett and was born in Trenton, New Jersey. Her family members were parishioners of Blessed Sacrament Parish. Sister Barbara graduated from Cathedral High School and entered the Sisters of Mercy in 1941, she took the name Sister Mary Elaine at her reception the following year. Gifted in the arts, she earned degrees from Georgian Court College and Notre Dame University. Sister Elaine taught art and mechanical drawing in Holy Spirit High School in Atlantic City and in St. Mary High School in Perth Amboy for a total of 31 years. Sister was also certified in mathematics.
In 1975, Sister moved to pastoral ministry. She was a pastoral assistant at St. James Parish in Woodbridge where she visited hospitalized and homebound parishioners. Sister Barbara initiated a social ministry program for elementary school students to visit elderly parishioners. She also set up a food pantry located in the basement of the convent. Sister Barbara also recruited parish volunteers to serve the needy. She was well known in the area for her 24-hour availability to serve the needs of runaways, abused mothers and unemployed women. On leaving St. James Parish, she became coordinator of hospice volunteers at Roosevelt Hospital Hospice in Edison.
Sister Barbara retired in 1991 and lived for several years near Lakewood, NJ. She joined the Prayer Apostolate at McAuley Health Care Center in Watchung in 2005.
Sister Barbara was the last surviving member of her immediate family. She will be remembered by the Sisters of Mercy and her many friends.
Visitation will take place at McAuley Hall Health Care, 1633 Highway 22, Watchung, NJ 07069
Wake: December 28, 2018 9:00 am to 10:30
Welcome Home: 9:30 am
Mass of Christian Burial: 10:30 am
Burial: St. Mary Cemetery, Trenton, NJ
Memorial donations may be made to the Sisters of Mercy, MidAtlantic Community
1645 Highway 22 West, Watchung, NJ 07069 in memory of Sister Barbara Burdett.