Josette Gocella, SSJ — 70 Years

Sister Josette Marie Gocella was born in Bradford, PA. She entered the Sisters of St. Joseph on September 8, 1954, from her home parish, St. Bernard, Bradford, Pennsylvania and professed her final vows on August 15, 1960. She received an MA in Religious Studies from the University of Chicago, an MA in English from Gannon University, Erie, and a BA in English from Villa Maria College, Erie. She studied Journalism at the University of Minnesota and Film Studies at New York University and Fordham. She received Spiritual Direction Training from St. Louis University and Milford Retreat Center, Cincinnati. For nearly 35 years, Sister Josette ministered outside the Erie Diocese. She was the supervisor of volunteers for the Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) and provided special services and grief outreach for the Jefferson County Coroner’s Office, both in Louisville, Kentucky. She was a founding Administrative Team member of the Centre International St. Joseph in LePuy-en-Velay, France, where the Congregation of the Sisters of St. Joseph, worldwide was founded in 1650. Her ministry career also includes serving as Chairperson of RCIA Committees in the Diocese of Memphis, Tennessee, and Archdiocese of Louisville, Kentucky. She ministered as a pastoral associate at the Church of Epiphany, Louisville, Kentucky, and Holy Rosary Parish, Memphis, TN. She was the principal of Villa Maria Academy in Erie, teaching English, Latin, French, religion,  and journalism. She also taught at St. Andrew, St. John, and Villa Maria Elementary Schools in Erie.

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