Kate D. Mahoney is a miracle and she wants you to know you are, too. Even if that’s not what you’d call it.
She’s named after the feisty, independent character in William Shakespeare’s “Taming of the Shrew,” and was born in Washington, D.C., to educators and activists. Sporting purple feet pajamas as a munchkin in the “Wizard of Oz”, Kate didn’t know her role of a lifetime would ultimately be that of just being herself.
Kate spent her formative years in Alexandria, Virginia, and then the Republic of Ireland. While on summer vacation in her parent’s birthplace of Central New York, she was diagnosed with stage four germ cell ovarian cancer and later experienced multi system organ failure. She was 14.
International and nondenominational prayer requests were directed to a deceased nun by the name of Mother Marianne Cope. Kate’s discharge papers state her recovery from the organ failure could not be explained medically. Her case led to the canonization of Mother Cope, and an adventure that was as sacred as it was side- splittingly funny to Vatican City.
Kate holds a B.A. in drama from Washington College in Chestertown, Maryland, as well as certificates from IO Chicago and Second City. She is an international speaker and activist who travels the globe to share honest and humorous anecdotes from her life as patient and caregiver.
About the Miracle
In August of 1992 Kate was diagnosed with what appeared to be a smoldering appendix but after further testing and surgery it was a malignant tumor the size of a basketball. Removed by a very skilled surgeon with the latest medical technology of the day, Kate still needed an aggressive treatment protocol. After several chemo sessions her body could not stand up to the task. By December she was shutting down. Organs failed systematically and she was in Intensive Care at Crouse Hospital for 46 days. Though there was hope there was also a very grim reality.
During this time Mahoney’s parents were approached by Sister Mary Laurence Hanley, a nun of the Franciscan Third Order. She had already dedicated many years of her life working on the cause for Sainthood of Mother Marianne Cope, a humble yet profoundly capable nun who is known in CNY for her role in hospital creation and administration but is acclaimed for creating a safe haven in the Leper Colony Kaluapappa in Molokai, HI.
General prayers became specific and were channeled to Mother Cope posthumously through nondenominational and international prayer chains requesting simply that she intercede in Kate’s recovery.
Though Kate had a long road ahead, her ICU discharge papers stated that her recovery could not be
Sister Hanley continued her devotion to the cause and in December of 2004 the Vatican announced that Marianne Cope would be elevated to the title of Blessed, due to Kate’s case.
In 2005 Kate, her parents, many of the sisters who had become dear friends, the ICU doctors from crouse and their families attended the Beatification Ceremony and met Pope Benedict in Rome.
In 2012 another CNY miracle occurred and Blessed Marianne was elevated to Saint Marianne, Mother of Outcasts. Historically speaking Kate’s case was fast tracked and she is one of only a few people alive to not only be the vehicle for a miracle in the Catholic Church but to have seen the completion of a sainthood case.
Syracuse Woman Magazine
Post Standard (Syracuse.com)