Sister Barbara Darby, O.P., died at the Dominican Sisters Motherhouse in Mission San Jose, California, on August 6, 2023. She was 89 years old and in the 68th year of her religious profession.
Born on January 18, 1934, in Portland, Oregon, Sister Barbara was the daughter of Joseph Wilfrid Darby and Ellen Pauline O’Sullivan. In Portland, she graduated from Holy Cross Elementary School and Immaculata Academy (later Marycrest High School) where she met the Dominican Sisters. In 1953, she entered the Dominican Sisters of Mission San Jose and made her first profession of vows in 1955.
An outstanding educator, Sister Barbara ministered as a Catholic school teacher or principal for 59 years. Her assignments in California included St. Anthony School, St. James School, and Immaculate Conception Elementary School, San Francisco; St. Mary School, Ukiah; St. Michael School and Santa Teresita School, Los Angeles; St. Boniface School, Anaheim; and St. Joseph School and Our Lady of Guadalupe School, Fremont. In Oregon she taught at St. Anne School and was principal of St. Therese School, Portland.
Sister Barbara treasured her family and her Irish roots. A gentle, generous, and loving person, Sister Barbara was a true “school woman” who served as master teacher or master principal to many of her Dominican Sisters and lay colleagues. She taught many teachers how to teach religion and plan the liturgies for school Masses. During the years of her retirement at the Motherhouse, she frequently mentioned how much she missed the children.
Sister Barbara is survived by her sister, Helen Darby of Portland, OR, and numerous nieces and nephews.
The Funeral Mass for Sister Barbara will be celebrated on Friday, August 11, at 10:30 a.m. at the Dominican Sisters Motherhouse Chapel, 43326 Mission Circle, Fremont, CA. Interment will follow at God’s Acre, the sisters’ cemetery at the Motherhouse. Those who attend must wear masks.
Sister Barbara Darby, O.P.