Sr Mary Clare has served in her order, The Daughters of Jesus, twice in Peterborough. She was a teacher at the St Thomas More Catholic Primary School around 20 years ago and then taught at St Martha’s School in King’s Lynn and spent time in the community at Thetford.
Sr Mary Clare came back to Peterborough in 2001 and worked as a Chaplain at Milton Keynes Prison then transferred to Highpoint at Haverhill. She set up the Chaplaincy at Peterborough Prison when it first opened and she finished this type of chaplaincy in 2011 at Stocken. This freed her up to work in the parish and she became very much involved in the Community and Cohesion Department of Peterborough City Council.
She had strong ties to the multi-cultural city and was instrumental in establishing strong links with the city’s Muslim communities. She was highly valued in this role particularly at the time of an EDL protest march in the city, when all five of the Mosques in the city advised all young men to stay out of the centre of the city in order to defuse the tension expected as a result of the march.
In January 2012, Sr Mary Clare volunteered as a trustee for the Trussell Trust Foodbank in Peterborough and was still serving in that role when she was asked to leave Peterborough for a new chapter in her busy life, first in Rickmansworth and later in Westgate on Sea. Sr Mary Clare has also been a very active member of the local Churches Together in Central Peterborough, serving on the Communities Group in that organisation.
When the first five of the Syrian refugee families came to Peterborough last year, Sr Mary Clare was at once involved in helping to settle one of the families and to find for them all that they needed to live their lives in a new country. The family are Muslims – mum and dad, two sons and a daughter – and asked if they might be allowed to attend Sr Mary Clare’s farewell Mass. She introduced them to the parish at the end of the Mass. Sr Mary Clare was the Diocesan Representative for refugees in Peterborough.
Sr Mary Clare received a Civic Award from the City earlier this year to recognise her great contribution to the life and community cohesion in the city over many years.
Fr Adam Sowa presented Sr Mary Clare her with a Papal blessing in thanks for her unrivalled contribution to parish and city life. We shall all miss her very much.
Adrian Chapman, Service Director: Communities and Safety at Peterborough City Council said: “I want to offer my sincerest thanks and appreciation to you for all the hard work as a cohesion champion for the City of Peterborough. Your role in the community has been invaluable having been involved with many projects across the city.”
Sr Mary Clare is moving to Westgate on Sea.
Read our previous story about Sr Mary Clare below.
Pictured above is Sr Mary Clare Mason with her Papal Blessing and the Syrian refugee family she has been helping.