In Memory

In Memory

In Memory of Sister Helen Watkins, PHJC

Monday, 29 December 2014 00:00

Sister Helen Watkins, PHJC, formerly known as Sister Nicholas, passed away December 29, 2014, at the Catherine Kasper Home, Donaldson, Indiana. She was born to Elmer and E. Jeannette (Kinnett) Watkins in Taylorville, Illinois on September 21, 1934. She entered the Poor Handmaid of Jesus Christ community and professed her first vows on July 16, 1959.

Sister Helen ministered in healthcare since 1955 as a nurse, clinical instructor, nurse practitioner, community health coordinator, or in administration at such institutions as St. Elizabeth and St. Anne Hospitals, Chicago; The Center at Donaldson, Donaldson, Indiana; St. Catherine Hospital, East Chicago, Indiana and Matthew 25 Medical and Dental Clinic, Fort Wayne, Indiana. 

From 1968 to 1970 she spent 19 months in Vietnam caring for refugees and as an adviser.  Previously she reminisced, “The time I spent in Viet Nam was an invaluable experience for me, it was good learning about a different culture, a simpler lifestyle which offered a chance to think, sort things out, and figure out what’s important in life and in nursing.”

In 2009 when she celebrated her 50-year jubilee as a Poor Handmaid of Jesus Christ, she wrote, “Although our ministries have changed, we have continued to seek and find new ways to serve the poor, the sick and the children.  I’ve never served in a ministry that I didn’t come to love both the people I served and the people with whom I worked.  With each change I always thought it was the best, only to find the next change was the best.”

Sister Helen retired to the Catherine Kasper Home in 2012.

May she rest in peace!

Memorial contributions may be made to the Poor Handmaids of Jesus Christ, PO Box 1, Donaldson, IN 46513.

 

In Memory of Sister Aline Clesen, PHJC

Thursday, 11 December 2014 00:00

Sister Aline Clesen, PHJC passed away December 9, 2014, at the Catherine Kasper Home, Donaldson, Indiana. She was born to John and Susan (Sampont) Clesen in Chicago, Illinois on August 10, 1916. She entered the Poor Handmaid of Jesus Christ community and professed her first vows on June 26, 1937.

For her entire career Sister Aline ministered in education.  For 64 years, she taught, or was principal, in several schools in Southern Illinois and Chicago; Fort Wayne, Indiana; and New Ulm, Minnesota. For 25 of those years she worked and volunteered in the Registrars Office at Ancilla College, Donaldson, Indiana. Sister Aline also served as organist and sacristan at several of her ministries.

When previously asked what it means to be a Poor Handmaid, she replied, “To me being a Poor Handmaid means that I should first of all search out my faith in a service of poverty, chastity and obedience and display the spirit of simplicity as I reach out to my Sisters in community and to others whom I meet or work with in loving service.”

Sister Aline retired to the Catherine Kasper Home in 2001.

May Sister Aline rest in peace!

Memorial contributions may be made to the Poor Handmaids of Jesus Christ, PO Box 1, Donaldson, IN 46513.

In Memory of Sister Stephen Brueggeman

Wednesday, 18 June 2014 00:00

Sister Stephen Brueggeman, PHJC died June 15, 2014 at the Catherine Kasper Home, Donaldson, Indiana. She was born Frances Josephine Brueggeman to Anthony and Helen (Dunkel) Brueggeman in Centralia, Illinois.

In 1945 she entered the Poor Handmaids of Jesus Christ congregation in Donaldson, Indiana and professed first vows on June 24, 1947.

Sr. Stephen was a graduate of Loyola University, Chicago with a B.SN.ED (Cum Laude) and a M. ED with a major in Education and a minor in Psychology. She also attended Cornell University for Hospital Administration and Wright Junior College for Accounting and Economics.

She began her ministry in healthcare in 1945 as a nurse at St. Anne’s Hospital, Chicago, a Poor Handmaid hospital. For the next 24 years she worked at St. Anne’s as a nurse, director of the nursing school and hospital administrator. After leaving St. Anne’s Hospital she ministered at St. Catherine Hospital, East Chicago, Indiana for 10 years as the hospital administrator.

Sister Stephen was a lobbyist for the Illinois Nursing Association after she impulsively got up during a Nurses Association meeting and defended the three-year hospital schools of nursing. She said she spent many hours in Springfield, Illinois legislature not only working to pass a new Nurse Practice Act, but also other legislative maters.

Sister Stephen served as the PHJC Provincial Superior of the American Province from 1979-1985.

After leaving office she returned to St. Catherine Hospital as Coordinator, Mission and Philosophy Education and then as Vice President of Mission Effectiveness at Ancilla Systems Incorporated, Hobart, Indiana. In 1997 she served the PHJC community, wrote a series of books on the history of the Poor Handmaids and volunteered her time at Nazareth Home. She was a wonderful storyteller and writer.

She retired to the Catherine Kasper Home in 2012.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Poor Handmaids of Jesus Christ, PO Box 1, Donaldson, IN 46513.

Sister Margaret Hanon, PHJC passed away on May 29, 2014, at the Catherine Kasper Home, Donaldson, Indiana. She was born to Otto and Fannie (Stocking) Hanon in Gary, Indiana on December 28, 1921. She entered the Poor Handmaid of Jesus Christ community and professed her first vows on June 25, 1942. She has one living sister, Sister Mary Boby, PHJC.

Sister Margaret ministered in education for 55 years. She taught, or was principal, in several schools in Southern Illinois and throughout Indiana and Minnesota. She said, “I enjoyed the challenges and gained valuable experiences with each move. I especially cherished the two years at Holy Cross School in Wendelin, Illinois, a rural parish in the Belleville Diocese.”

Her last teaching ministry was at Ancilla College as an English Professor. After leaving full-time teaching, Sister Margaret continued to be involved as a volunteer, tutor, and Advocacy Coordinator. Throughout her years in education she also played the organ at many of the ministries. She retired in 1997.

May Sister Margaret rest in peace!

Memorial contributions may be made to the Poor Handmaids of Jesus Christ, PO Box 1, Donaldson, IN 46513.

Sister Mary Jane Sloderbeck, PHJC, formerly known as Sister Irene, passed away on February 17, 2014 at the Catherine Kasper Home, Donaldson, Indiana. She was born to Elijah and Anna (Riplinger) Sloderbeck in Marion, Indiana on June 22, 1926. She entered the Poor Handmaid of Jesus Christ community and professed her first vows on June 25, 1947.

In Memory of Sister Philomene Pawlik, PHJC

Thursday, 26 December 2013 12:41

Sister Philomene Pawlik, PHJC passed away on December 25, 2013 at the Catherine Kasper Home, Donaldson, Indiana. She was born to Hugo and Filomena (Romanovsky) Pawlik in Knox, Indiana on July 6, 1923. She entered the Poor Handmaid of Jesus Christ community and professed her first vows on June 25, 1944.

Sister Philomene began ministering in the medical profession in 1946 at St. Anne Hospital, Chicago.  Over the next 51 years she served as a nursing, medical and surgical supervisor; clinical instructor; pediatric playroom supervisor; in pastoral care; or Sister hostess at many medical facilities throughout Indiana and Illinois. When the Catherine Kasper Home opened in 1970, she became the first head nurse and between 1985-1989, she served as Parish Ministry volunteer at Our Lady of Prairie in Belle Plaine, Minnesota.

Sister Philomene retired to the Catherine Kasper Home in 1997.

Once when reflecting back on her life, Sister Philomene said the most comforting word to her was faith – faith in God and faith in the people that touched her life.  She said being a Poor Handmaid of Jesus Christ meant to love and work in the presence of God and in the footsteps of Blessed Catherine Kasper.

May Sister Philomene rest in peace!

Memorial contributions may be made to the Poor Handmaids of Jesus Christ, PO Box 1, Donaldson, IN 46513.

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