Marlborough – Sister Rollande Ferland (Sr. Marie Claire Helene), 94, a Sister of Saint Anne, died Jan. 17. 2021 in Alliance Health at Marie Esther Center in this city.
She was born in Central Falls, R.I.., the fourth child of five born to Omer Ferland and Lumina (Plante) Ferland. Her early education varied, and she attended the former St. Anne Academy in Marlborugho, several elementary years in schools in Pawtucket, R.I., her main high school years at Notre Dame High School in Central Falls, R.I., and she graduated from St. Georges High School in Manchester, N.H.
Following her high school graduation, she worked in business/merchandising for a time. Then, she followed in two of her older sisters’ footsteps and became a Sister of St. Anne. Following vows in Lachine, Quebec, she returned to the United States and began a 30-year ministry in education in schools sponsored by the Sisters of St. Anne throughout New England and in other Catholic schools.
Her somewhat eclectic elementary education gave her the skills along with her own creativity, to move from school to school with an ease greater than others. Her first assignment was at the former Holy Name of Jesus grammar school in Worcester. During her early career, she would serve there three times. She also taught three times at the former St. Joseph School also in Worcester. Her other teaching assignments were in Newton and in Cohoes, N.Y.
Sister Rollande earned a BA degree from Anna Maria College and did further studies in Theology. At a time when parish schools were closing, Sisters searched for other Catholic Schools for teaching roles. Sister Rollande joined a good friend and Sister of St. Anne and became part of the faculty at Bishop Guertin High School in Nashua, established by the Brothers of the Sacred Heart. For almost 25 years, they became involved in different aspects of this school.
Ever the educator, Sister Rollande ended her active ministry years as the school’s Librarian. She moved to the convent in Marlborough and, for many years, was the sacristan at St. Anne Convent. Her seemingly boundless energy allowed her to serve her sisters as they aged in place.
Sister Rollande was predeceased by her parents, her brother, and her sisters, Helene and Claire, both Sisters of St. Anne, and her twin, Jeanne. She leaves to grieve her family of the Sisters of St. Anne, her cousins, Claire Betti, Denise Fitzgerald, Elaine Burkinshaw, Lucille Botelho, Mrs. Robert Waldon, and her close friends, Mary Starratt and Paula Bartlett.
In accord with current restrictions due to the pandemic, burial services Wednesday, Jan. 20 are private. At a later date, a public memorial service with the Sisters of St. Anne will be held.
In lieu of flowers, a memorial contribution may be made to the Sisters of St. Anne Retirement Fund, 720 Boston Post Road East, Marlborough, MA 01752, or to a charity of your choice.
Arrangements are under the direction of Collins Funeral Home, (www.CollinsFuneral.com), 378 Lincoln St., Marlborough.