In memoriam: Sister Loretta Picucci, SP

By Sister Rosemary Schmalz, SP

ST. MARY OF THE WOODS, Ind. – Sister Loretta Picucci, SP died on Nov. 9 in Providence Health Care. She was born on June 23, 1941 in Chicago to Joseph and Lucy Paoletti Picucci and was baptized Loretta Louise.

Sister Loretta entered the Congregation of the Sisters of Providence on Sept. 12, 1964 and received the name Sister Loretta Joseph. She professed final vows Apr. 24, 1976. She earned a bachelor’s degree from Loyola University, Chicago. Of her 59 years as a Sister of Providence, she ministered as a primary teacher for 14 years in schools in Indiana, Illinois and Washington DC. Committing herself to working with the poor, she served as an assistant director of a Congregation Day Nursery in Chicago for two years, an outreach minister at Sacred Heart Southern Missions in Mississippi for eight years, a family care professional in Chicago for five years and an ESL teacher in California for five years. Her last 15 years of active ministry were at Providence in the Desert in Coachella, California, a sponsored ministry of the Congregation serving a Hispanic community, many of whom were farm workers. There she continued to teach English. Retiring in 2018, she moved to the motherhouse where she committed herself totally to the ministry of prayer.

All of Sister Loretta’s ministries were rooted in compassion and love. She never rushed. No matter what needed to be done, she worked from a contemplative center, living in the present, giving her full attention to the task at hand and the person she was serving.

Sister Loretta is survived by a sister Josephine Mooney of Pittsburgh. She is preceded in death by a brother, Peter Picucci.

A Mass of Christian Burial was held on Tuesday, Nov. 21 at the Church of the Immaculate Conception, with burial in the cemetery of the Sisters of Providence.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Sisters of Providence, 1 Sisters of Providence, St. Mary-of-the-Woods, IN 47876.