CONGRATULATIONS, SISTER MARY JAMES!
Sister Mary James Toth celebrated her 100th Birthday on April 17, 2022, and is incredibly grateful to the Lord for the many gifts He has given to her.
Sister Mary James (Mildred Ann Toth) was born on April 17, 1922 in Cleveland, Ohio and baptized two weeks later at St. Margaret’s Church on the East Side.
She attended Harvey Rice Elementary for K-2; St. Margaret’s School for 3-6; St.Therese’s School (Little Flower) for 7; and Garfield Heights High for 8-12.
After high school, she took care of two children; worked at a confectionery store and then at Richman Brothers Men’s Clothing Store (lining men’s suit vests).
Her uncle, Franciscan Father Benjamin Toth, and her devotion to Jesus in the Eucharist influenced her decision to enter religious life. On February 1, 1942 Sister James entered the Sisters of the Divine Redeemer (an international Congregation) whose American Region is based in Elizabeth, Pennsylvania. She professed her Vows on August 15, 1944 and has been a Sister for 78 years.
During her years of active ministry, she taught in New York (Buffalo); in Ohio (Cleveland and Fairport); and for many years at various elementary schools in Pennsylvania: St. Bartholomew in Penn Hills, St.Paulinus in Clairton, St. Michael in Elizabeth, and James Lavell in Munhall. Sister James particularly enjoyed teaching second graders about the Sacrament of Reconciliation and the Holy Eucharist. From 1964-1969 Sister served as novice director for those preparing to become Sisters of the Divine Redeemer.
When asked what she liked most about teaching, her response was: “There’s so much! I enjoyed seeing the children use the learning games I made, and progressing because of them.” Sister was an enthusiastic and creative teacher whose learning games were not only abundant, but great fun.