Sister Francis Margaret Smith, OP, entered the Sisters of Saint Dominic of Caldwell on September 8,1958. In her heart that day she was probably praying, “Here I am, Lord, I come to do your will.”  Throughout her life, Francis Margaret was involved in many different ministries. A gifted seamstress, she was an apprentice to Sister Gerard during her postulancy and novitiate days learning to make habits.

Once professed, Francis Margaret responded to God’s call to be a teacher of little ones. Her soft, caring manner was a perfect fit. A few years later, she was asked to serve our sick sisters by cooking in both the old and new infirmaries for six years under the direction of Sister Ann Dominic. She then returned to teaching the little ones followed by a brief stint as house mother at Maryglenn Home for Girls. Can’t you see her listening intently to the concerns of the girls?

In 1991 Francis Margaret again said, “Here I am Lord,” and, this time, it was a call to become a missionary for three years in Marsh Harbor, Abaco, Bahamas. In addition to teaching, she used her gifts helping the people acquire life skills in sewing and cooking. Back from Abaco, Francis Margaret returned to Caldwell and spent the rest of her ministry as a helper in our community-sponsored works. 

On the occasion of her Golden Jubilee, Francis Margaret was asked, “What has been the biggest surprise in your Dominican life and mission?” Her answer was, “My biggest surprise was I have served in so many different ministries.” This statement is so true when we reflect on Francis Margaret’s life as a Dominican of Caldwell.

On May 4, 2020, Sister Francis Margaret answered the call for the last time, “Here I am Lord,” and ran into the loving arms of the God she loved so well.


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