The funeral Mass for Sister Mary Jane Paolella, ASCJ, was celebrated March 28 at Mount Sacred Heart Chapel in Hamden, Conn. Sister Mary Jane died March 26 at Sacred Heart Manor in Hamden. She was 71 years old and a professed Apostle of the Sacred Heart of Jesus for 50 years.
Born in New Haven, Conn. on March 6, 1947, she graduated in 1965 from Sacred Heart Academy in Hamden and entered the Apostles of the Sacred Heart of Jesus on Sept. 8, 1965. She professed first vows on Aug. 22, 1967 and perpetual vows on Aug. 22, 1973. In June of 2017, Sister Mary Jane celebrated her 50th Jubilee with her Sister Apostles, family and friends at Mount Sacred Heart Chapel.
Sister Mary Jane earned a bachelor’s degree in biology from St. Louis University and a master’s in biology from the University of Bridgeport (Conn.). She ministered in Missouri, New York, and Connecticut as a religious superior, teacher, science department chairperson and administrator.
In the Archdiocese of St. Louis, Sister Mary Jane taught at Cor Jesu Academy (1976-1990). She then spent more than 28 years as a teacher and administrator at Sacred Heart Academy in Hamden (1990-present). In addition, working with a research team from Yale University, she pioneered a program for high school students which combined genetics and research for the sequencing of DNA. Several of her articles on biotechnology were published in scientific journals and periodicals. For almost 20 years, Sister Mary Jane served on the Human Investigation Committee of Yale University School of Medicine which reviews biomedical research. She was honored both at the local and national level for her work in genetics, biotechnology, and bioethics.
Sister Mary Jane is survived by two brothers, Michael and John Paolella.