A funeral Mass for Sister Carol Patron will be celebrated at 10 a.m. Tuesday, Nov. 7, at Nazareth Living Center Chapel in south St. Louis County. Sister Carol died Oct. 17 at Nazareth Living Center. She was 82 years old and a Sister of St. Joseph of Carondelet for 63 years.
Sister Carol was born on July 1, 1941, in Atlanta to Raoul and Myrtle (Sullivan) Patron. She entered the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet in 1959 and was received into the novitiate in 1960 as Sister Denise Marie. She earned a bachelor’s degree in elementary education from Fontbonne College in 1965 and a master’s degree in theological studies from the Franciscan School of Theology in Berkeley, California, in 1989.
In 1964, Sister Carol began her ministry work as a teacher at St. Roch School in Indianapolis. Two years later, she served at St. Francis de Sales School in Denver, as a teacher (1966-69) and as principal (1969-73).
Sister Carol returned to her hometown of Atlanta in 1973, where she would remain for the next 14 years. During those first six years, she served at St. Anthony School as a teacher (1973-74) and principal (1974-79). She then went on to be a tutor/volunteer and teacher at the Village of St. Joseph, a residential facility for children with learning, emotional and behavioral problems. After a sabbatical and studies in Berkeley, Sister Carol stayed in the area and served as an administrator and teacher at the Center for Growth and Wholeness (1989-94). During this time, from 1990-93, she also taught junior high at St. Perpetua School in Lafayette, California.
In 1994, she became a massage therapist and helped train other religious and lay women and men in Massage: The Art of Anointing, a program that helped integrate healing touch into their ministries. Following this, she took her ministry to Springbank Retreat Center in Kingstree, South Carolina, where she served as a massage therapist, prayer and ritual coordinator for their sabbatical program and retreats and office manager.
In 2002, Sister Carol provided home care for the aged with CSJ Care in House Springs. In 2003, she returned to Georgia as the executive director of the Cedar Hill Enrichment Center in Gainesville. In 2006, she began eight years of service as the special projects coordinator for the Sullivan Center. The Sullivan Center worked with those in need of skills to better manage their finances, living and educational situations.
Sister Carol retired in 2014 in Smyrna, Georgia. She moved to St. Louis in 2015 and served as a volunteer, including as a part-time archival aide for her CSJ community from 2016-22. She moved to the Village at Nazareth in 2019 and remained there until her death.
She is survived by three sisters, Kathleen Patron Tate of Decatur, Georgia, Mary Penn of Frankfort, Kentucky, and Patti Simpkins of Salt Lake City, Utah; and one brother, Dennis Patron of Northfield, Ohio. Burial will be in Resurrection Cemetery.