It is a very long way from Killala to Tanzania.
And yet for Sr Mary McNulty, born to a family of nine on a small farm near Rathowen, a remote village in that country is now her home and she has dedicated her life to educating the girls who live there.
Sr McNulty, a member of the Pallottine Sisters, has been working in Siuyu, Tanzania, for 25 years, and the Mayo Advertiser recently made a donation of €1,000 to Sr McNulty to help fund her projects there.
When Sr McNulty first arrived to Siuyu, there was no such thing as secondary level education for girls. However, today, Sr McNulty presides over a secondary school which has gained a reputation as one of the best educational institutes in the whole of Tanzania and she is currently working to double the capacity of the school at a cost of €650,000.
Sr Mary and two other nuns first travelled to Siuya in 1990 at the request of the Pallottine Fathers, with whom she had worked for a number of years.
She quickly learned the local language and identified what she believed to be the most urgent needs, which were education for girls, health care, and clean water.
She began fundraising for her work. It was slow going. There was no water or electricity on site at first and things were so basic that all of the bricks and furniture for the building were made by hand.
Eventually work progressed and a school, dormitories, and staff housing took shape.
The Pallotti Secondary School for Girls opened in 1995, and in time, Sr Mary added a dispensary to the facilities.
Sr Mary became the headmistress of the school and the Superior of the Pallottine Sisters in Tanzania.
Sr Mary’s brother, Sean, also works at the school teaching English. He has written a grammar book that is used in secondary schools all over Tanzania.
In 2007, Sr Mary decided to double the capacity of the school. The project involves five phases at a cost of €650,000.
In 2010, Sr Mary was elected Provincial Superior of the Pallottine Sisters in England and Tanzania.
She still holds the position of Mission Superior in Tanzania.