A Life Devoted to Service

Posted by Kacie Emmerson

April 18, 2024

By Dana Hinton | Western Province Communications

Sister Mary Braley exemplifies unwavering dedication to service, from her role as a beloved teacher to her involvement in parish activities. Guided by faith, she impacts lives with love and compassion, inspiring others to follow suit. Her commitment to serving others, regardless of scale, showcases the transformative power of kindness. 

From the classroom to the community, the call for compassion and service, Sister Mary Braley shows her unwavering dedication. For decades, she has been a prominent figure in her community, embodying the principles of love, kindness, and selflessness. While her role as a second-grade teacher may have been her primary ministry, Sister Mary continues to impact lives profoundly through various acts of service, both big and small.

Throughout her life, Sister Mary has been guided by a deep sense of faith and a desire to live out the teachings of Christ. She said, “For honor and Glory to God, that’s my mission. I am a disciple of Christ, and the Sisters of Charity of Nazareth are how I live it out because the love of Christ impels us.” 

For decades, Sister Mary Braley devoted herself to teaching second grade, where she nurtured young hearts and minds with care. Additionally, she played an active role in her church, Immaculate Conception in Massachusetts, often staying busy with weddings, baptisms, rehearsals, and serving as Eucharistic Minister and altar server. 

Though retired from formal teaching, Sister Mary’s commitment to serving others remains as strong as ever. “If there is any way to help, I will,” she says. 

She described helping out at a fall festival held in October of 2023. “I sold raffle tickets, and I loved it.” 

One of the ways she continues to make a difference is through her involvement in parish activities. Recently, she took on the responsibility of leading the first communion retreat, where she will guide students through the stations of the cross, helping them deepen their understanding of the significance of this sacred sacrament. 

Sister Mary serves as a lector for weekday masses at Immaculate Conception Parish. She also volunteers with the console ministry, ensuring that grieving families find solace by giving them a light meal after funeral masses. 

She is an active member of the set-up team that prepares the dining room each week to feed the hungry in her community. With humility and grace, she works alongside other volunteers, setting tables and arranging chairs, knowing that their efforts will bring nourishment and comfort to those in need. 

“There are many things I would like to do but can not anymore. But, God is continuing to work through each one of us.” 

In addition to her involvement in organized charitable activities, Sister Mary demonstrates the spirit of kindness in her everyday interactions. Whether helping a neighbor with their compost or offering a listening ear, she radiates warmth and empathy wherever she goes. 

“It is all part of it, prayer and presence.” 

She enjoys daily walks with no distractions, listening to the birds, and stopping to pet the dogs. In addition to exercise, she says, “a sense of humor keeps one young.” 

“Stay open to new opportunities as well.” 

Sister Mary Braley uses her life for the transformative power of service and compassion. Through her determined efforts, she continues to touch hearts, uplift spirits, and spread love in a world that can feel fragmented and divided. Her commitment to serving others, no matter how small the task, reminds us of the profound impact we can have when we choose to live with love as our guiding principle. 

“I still have fervor, willingness, joy,” says Sister Mary. “It is a day at a time, a year at a time.” 


  1. Toni Vano

    So happy to see that you are still going strong in His service! God BLESS you!

  2. Martha Walsh

    Always good to talk, see, and pray with you. Love, Martha

  3. Sister Ann Susan SCN Villa

    Sister Mary, you are an inspiration to all SCN’s and to all who witness your love for God in a simple and caring manner.
    Thank you.

    • Maggie Cooper

      Hello Mary,
      What a joy to read your story!
      You are really involved in so wonderful ministries! That’s great! Ialso love to see you on zooms!
      Sending greetings and love ❤️!


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