Sister Margaret Safford, former Mount Carmel president

Sister of Mount Carmel Margaret Safford, who served for 66 years in religious life, died Nov. 4 at Our Lady of Wisdom Healthcare Center in New Orleans.  She was 86 years old.

Sister Margaret, formerly Sister Mary Sidney, entered the Congregation of Our Lady of Mount Carmel in 1949 and received the habit in 1950. She made her first profession in 1952 and pronounced perpetual vows Aug. 3, 1955.

Sister Margaret earned a bachelor’s degree in secondary education from Loyola University New Orleans and a master’s degree in education and a minor in administration from St. Louis University. She received a master’s in pastoral studies from Loyola University in Chicago. Her post graduate work included theology at St. Mary’s University and Regis College, creativity and contemplation at Notre Dame University and the spiritual direction program at the Archdiocesan Spirituality Center in New Orleans.

Sister Margaret taught at Mount Carmel schools in Thibodaux, Abbeville and New Orleans and at Our Lady of Prompt Succor in Westwego, St. James Major in New Orleans and Vermillion Catholic in Abbeville, where she was also principal from 1966-77.

She has also served as president and assistant to the president of the congregation, an adult educator at Hope House, manager and spiritual director of Blessing Place (now the Carmelite Spirituality Center) and pastoral minister at St. Margaret’s Daughter’s Nursing Home.

In 2005, Sister Margaret returned to the Carmelite Spirituality Center as assistant to the director and served until 2015.

Sister Margaret is survived by three sisters, Mary Lou Begnaud of Natchitoches; Alice Robertson of Indialantic, Florida; and Alma Yvonne “Bebe” Ebel, of New Iberia.

A Mass of Christian Burial was celebrated Nov. 10 at the Sisters of Mount Carmel Motherhouse Chapel.  Sister Margaret was interred in St. Louis No. 3 Cemetery.

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