Sister Christine Julie McGuirk

"How good is the good God!"
St. Julie Billiart

Sister Christine Julie McGuirk had a happy childhood. She grew up in Cambridge, Mass., with her large family. She was one of a set of identical twins, but the family had another set of twin girls, another girl and a two boys. All are still living except for her twin.

Her family was very active and well-known in their parish of St. Mary in Cambridge. She attended St. Mary's Catholic School through 12th grade, though her brothers went to a Jesuit high school.

Christine started thinking about becoming a sister when she was in the seventh grade, and remembers that the sisters gave vocation talks. People thought that her sister  Patricia would be the one to enter religious life—or really any of her sisters—except for Christine! But Christine is the one who joined the Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur as a postulant on August 1, 1951, in Waltham, Mass.

Christine's first assignment was to teach 50 fifth grade boys at St. John School in Peabody, Mass. She loved the group, although the class was not generally well-behaved. Christine was so new at teaching that she didn't recognize that the boys were naughty. A sister worked with Christine to help her with discipline. By her second year of teaching her classroom discipline was better and continued for improve.

In time, Christine taught seventh graders and then high school girls. Eventually she received her last assignment— to teach biology at Boston College High School (BC High), a Jesuit school for boys in Boston. When Christine first taught at BC High, she was one of only two women on the faculty. Since that time the number of women teaching there has increased. Christine loved her 20 years of teaching at BC High; the Jesuits were helpful, and the students were well behaved.

At the time of her 70th Jubilee, Christine expressed that she is especially grateful for the Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur—for knowing them, living with them, and celebrating with them.

Sister Christine Julie's Ministries

1954-57 St. John School, Peabody, Mass.
1957-58 Msgr. Patterson School
1958-59 St. Mark School, Dorchester, Mass.
1959 Cardinal Cushing Central High School, South Boston, Mass.
1964 Julie Billiart School, North Boston, Mass.
1964-66 Notre Dame School of Fine Arts, Milton, Mass.
1966 Kenya

If you'd like to make a gift to the Sisters in Sister Christine's honor online, please click here or to give by mail or phone, please click here.


  1. Hi Sister CJ!
    I was just thinking about you and praying for you during my Divine Mercy Chaplet. You taught me at C-J in Dayton,OH. I am a 1983 grad.

  2. I took likewise had you in my thoughts today discussing your Bostonian accent as part of a larger topic – You taught me Honors Biology and I very much enjoyed the experience of you as a teacher …maybe not so much dissecting things. In my stash of memorabilia is some ridiculously long roll of paper I had to create a timeline of evolution by hand sketching lots of stuff – in one place I sketched 'prehistoric air' …lol and you were OK with that as the paper had marking there making it unusable.

    I hope you are enjoying your life to the fullest and my day is brighter having thought of you and those times – Take care sistaaa

  3. Sister CJ! Congratulations and what a legacy! Thank you for my years in HS (wish I'd paid attention in Chemistry haha as you'd warned me) I hope you are relaxing and keeping well. We were so fortunate to have you teach and mentor us girls at Cardinal Cushing in South Boston! What wonderful sometimes hilarious memories. You kicked our butts into shape- or at least tried to haha! Enjoy retirement you've earned it! And Happy Birthday!!!
    Kathleen CCCHS 1988

    1. Thanks for your nice message to Sister Christine Julie, Kathleen! I've forwarded it on to her, and she's sure to enjoy it.

      (for the Sisters)

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