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Sr. Joan Kopf, RGS

March 9, 1934 ~ August 23, 2008 (age 74)

MARLBOROUGH Sister Joan Kopf, RGS (Anne Regina), died at Good Shepherd Center on Aug. 23, 2008, after a long illness. She was 74 years of age and had been a Sister of the Good Shepherd for 51 years. Sister Joan was born in Orange, N.J., the daughter of Joseph L. and Anna R. (Ellis) Kopf. She was educated in the Fielding School, Maplewood, N.J., Marylawn High School in South Orange, Berkeley School of Business, E. Orange, and received her B.S. in business administration from the College of St. Elizabeth in Morristown, N.J. She received her M.A. in theology from St. Johns University in Jamaica, N.Y. Sister Joan entered the Good Shepherd Novitiate in Peekskill, N.Y., in 1956 to prepare for her long career caring for the poor and marginalized of society, with special focus on educating teenage girls and women. Her business skills were invaluable, and she was also certified to teach business courses to young people in Massachusetts. After serving as executive secretary to the province leader in Peekskill, Sister Joan was asked to become vocation director, working out of Peekskill and Marlborough, and at the end of this assignment she became superior in Marlborough. Sister Joans business skills were always in demand, and in 1979, she became provincial treasurer in Jamaica, N.Y., a post that she held for 13 years. Her subsequent assignments included that of province bookkeeper in Jamaica, N.Y., after which she was director of formation for the Good Shepherd community. She was also involved in retreat work at Morristown and a vital part of the Spirituality Center of North America, working interprovincially, conducting retreats throughout the U.S. During this time, she also served in the program with the teenage youngsters at Collier Services in Wickatunk, N.J., and even found time to do the bookkeeping in Wickatunk. In 2008, she was missioned to Good Shepherd Center in Marlborough, where she continued to serve in a ministry of prayer and congregational service in the Good Shepherd mission. Sister Joan is survived by her brother, Ellis, of Cranford, N.J., and many nieces and nephews. She was predeceased by her sisters Joan Kopf and Mary Popelka. A Mass of Christian Burial will be offered for Sister Joan by Rev. Maurice OConnor at Good Shepherd Center, 406 Hemenway St., Marlborough, on Friday, Sept. 5, at 11 a.m. Calling hours will also be at Good Shepherd Center on Thursday, Sept. 4, from 4 to 8 p.m., with a prayer service at 7 p.m. In addition, an October memorial service is planned in New Jersey, with a date yet to be determined. A private burial will take place at St. Vincents Cemetery, Madison, N.J. Funeral arrangements are under the direction of Fitzgerald & Collins Funeral Home (, 378 Lincoln St., Marlborough. Expressions of sympathy in Sister Joans memory may be made to the Good Shepherd Retirement Fund, 406 Hemenway St., Marlborough, MA The Sisters of the Good Shepherd were founded by St. Mary Euphrasia Pelletier in Angers, France in 1835, in the U.S. (Louisville, Ky.) in 1843; Boston in 1867, and Harwichport, 1993.

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