Obituary: Sister Germaine Richer
Sister Germaine Richer of the Missionary Sisters of Our Lady of Africa died on April 10 at Our Lady of Providence Residential Care Facility, in Winooski.
She was born in Manchester, New Hampshire, on Sept. 1, 1921, she was the daughter of Edouard Richer and Evangeline Boivert Richer and the sixth of eight children. After graduation at St Marie’s High School, she worked for a while as a secretary in the District Commissioner’s Office. Sister entered the Missionary Sisters of Our Lady of Africa in Quebec, Canada in 1946.
After initial formation, she was sent to Tanganyika [Tanzania] East Africa, where she served in several different missions. She made her final religious profession there in 1954. Due to illness, Germaine returned to the USA in 1958 and then remained here for the rest of her missionary life serving in various roles in several different communities: on the novitiate staff, provincial treasurer, various fund-raising activities, e.g., “mission appeals,” and assistant to the provincial superior.
In 2004, she was appointed to Our Lady of Providence in Winooski, VT. While there she has worked as a volunteer, doing various kinds of pastoral and social work: Health Ministry, Winooski community garden, Winooski Choir, and the Coffee hour at O’Brien Community Center. She loved working with others, especially the younger generation, and “bringing people together.” When the time came that she was less active, one could very often find her in the chapel praying. At times, she would wheel herself up to the tabernacle so as to be close to Jesus, to sing and pray to him. When the OLP staff could not find her, that was the first place they looked.
Sister Germaine was predeceased by her parents, all of her siblings: Marguerite Tellier, Emile Richer, Helene Dionne, Hector Richer, Alfred Richer, Sister Irene (Presentation of Mary) and Rev. Maurice Richer, diocesan priest of Manchester, New Hampshire. She is survived by many nieces and nephews, and also by her sisters in Religion, the Missionary Sisters of Our Lady of Africa.
A private Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated in the chapel at Our Lady of Providence Residence in Winooski, on April 19, 2023 at 11 AM. The burial will follow in the Cemetery of St. Francis Xavier Parish. Cremation and funeral arrangements are in the care of LaVigne Funeral Home, Winooski. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Missionary Sisters of Our Lady of Africa in support of their ministries in Africa.