In memory of Lucy Palermino, United States, 1924-2017

It is with great sadness that I share with you news of the death of our beloved Oblate, Lucy Palermino, on Saturday, October 14th, after enduring the effects of a stroke. Her extraordinary transparency of spirit, firmness of faith, and love of the Oblate community of WCCM are all reflected in the words of some of her friends, below. 

All of these reflections bear witness to the tremendous impact her amazing, embracing presence had on those who knew her. I’m sure we’ll be hearing more memories and anecdotes (Lucy had a tremendous wit and was a great story-teller) in the days to come. Please share with me any of your memories that you’d like me to share with the community.

This photograph of Lucy was taken in June, 2017, in Chicago, at the first-ever US Oblate retreat. Even here she made new friends and greeted with extraordinary attention those she already knew. Given her love of our community, her presence at our first national Oblate retreat will always be a happy memory for me.

 Much love,


Fr Laurence writes:Lucy was well named as a vehicle of light. Deeply rooted in her faith and the body of Christ she continued to grow and spread the light in new and courageous ways. She was an exemplary oblate, meditator and disciple of Jesus. Our oblate community far and near will hold her in its prayer and I will offer mass for her and those who grieve. The love and care her family, friends, and community showed her in her last struggles testifies to the deep inspiration she excited and how contagious was her generosity and compassion. We are blessed to have travelled with her. 

Mary Ann Gould writes:  Lucy was released into the loving arms of Christ on Saturday, October 14, just one month shy of her 93rd birthday. She has been surrounded by the love, prayer and the companionship of family and friends since her stroke in early July. Her loving niece by marriage , Rebecca Palermino, was with her on Saturday when she passed away. Lucy had been hospitalized for less than a week. Several local meditators, friends and family visited Lucy during her final days in the hospital.  Anne Dillon even flew in from Florida to say goodbye. A meditator in our group at Good Shepherd called me yesterday and said she has never experienced so much love lavished on someone who was dying. Lucy continued to inspire, most especially, in the silence of her final days. She has not left us. Lucy is very much a part of who we are and have become.  Her loving care continues. 

Anne Dillon writes:  Two days before Lucy left this world we stood around her bed and sang songs of Jesus and love. Anthony’s voice the strongest reaching Lucy’s inner ear. Eventually we ran out of songs and fell silent. Lucy had been agitated or unresponsive most of the day but now she was wholly present with us. “Sing some more” she said in the old familiar shy but commanding way. Music had stirred her soul again. Stirred her awake one last time to see her nephew and friends loving her as she had loved them and so many others in her long, storied life. A woman who never had children but was mother to so many. A woman who belonged to no one and to everyone but above all to her God who she knew she “belonged to since the age of 7.” She always loved God first and from that central place her love for all humanity deepened and grew steadily stronger as the years went by. A beacon of light in our midst we were blessed to have been touched by that all-encompassing love she shared so joyously with all who came her way. Strengthened and shaped by that love, in the final hours Lucy was able to say “I want to be with Our Lord.” It was time to go and she went unafraid and joyfully to that “unknown land where we belong.”

 And Lucy Beck shares with us a link to a wonderful video of Lucy Palermino on YouTube: WATCH HERE

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