by NZ CATHOLIC staff
A Wellington nun born before the outbreak of World War I has died.
Sr Mary Winefride Blake was born in Kelburn in March 1914 and died on
August 6 in Hutt Hospital. She was 101 years of age.
She was trained as a singer before she entered St Mary’s Convent on her 19th birthday in 1933 and became a Sister of Mercy in 1936. She taught at St Mary’s College in Wellington for many years.
“My grandmother was very, very musical; and my aunts. My father used
to sing duets,” she once said.
She had said that a highlight of her career was founding St Mary’s Schola, which became a major source of entry for young singers into Church choirs and other regional choirs.
In 2003 she was one of 14 finalists in The Dominion Post’s Wellingtonian of the Year award. In 1981 she received a Queen’s Service Medal for contribution to arts and religious culture. She was later made an Officer of the New Zealand Order of Merit.
In 2007 she received a papal award.
Her requiem Mass was held at the Cathedral of the Sacred Heart on