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Sister Barbara Hengesbach, formerly known as Sister Agnes William Hengesbach, died on Sunday, November 15, 2020, at the Dominican Life Center in Adrian, Michigan. She was 93 years of age and in the 75th year of her religious profession in the Adrian Dominican Congregation.
Sister Barbara was born in Lansing, Michigan, to Harold and Irma (Mikulaschek) Hengesbach. She graduated from Resurrection High School in Lansing, received a bachelor’s degree in history from Siena Heights College (University) in Adrian, and earned a master’s degree in education from the University of Detroit (Detroit-Mercy).
Sister Barbara spent 42 years ministering in education in Detroit, Ruth, and Hazel Park, Michigan and four years in Chicago and Joliet, Illinois. She was principal for one year at St. Augustine School in Detroit, and for six years at Sts. Peter and Paul School in Ruth, Michigan. She also taught for 11 years at Dominican High School in Detroit, an institution of the Congregation. She ministered for 10 years in Christian service to seniors in Hazel Park, Michigan.
Sister became a resident of the Dominican Life Center in 2014. She was preceded in death by her parents and two sisters: Anita McClure and Elaine M. Bannasch. She is survived by a sister, Shirley Stock, of Mason, Michigan; loving nieces and nephews; and her Adrian Dominican Sisters.
Due to COVID-19 mitigation protocols, the Dominican Life Center is closed until further notice to all guests or visitors. All are welcome to participate in Sister’s wake and funeral via live stream.
The Vigil Prayer will be held at 7:00 p.m. on Thursday, November 19, 2020, in St. Catherine Chapel. A Mass of Christian Burial will be offered in St. Catherine Chapel at 10:30 a.m. on Friday, November 20, 2020. The Rite of Committal will be in the Congregation cemetery.
Memorial gifts may be made to Adrian Dominican Sisters, 1257 East Siena Heights Drive, Adrian, Michigan, 49221. Funeral arrangements are being handled by Anderson-Marry Funeral Home, Adrian.
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Sister Thomas Leo Monahan, baptized Kathleen Monahan, died on Friday, November 13, 2020, at the Dominican Life Center in Adrian, Michigan. She was 91 years of age and in the 68th year of her religious profession in the Adrian Dominican Congregation.
Sister Thomas Leo was born in Chicago to Roy and Kathryn (Devine) Monahan. She graduated from Amundsen High School in Chicago; received a bachelor’s degree in history from Siena Heights College (University) in Adrian; and earned a master’s degree in history; and a master’s degree in administration/school supervision, both from DePaul University in Chicago.
Sister spent 61 years ministering in elementary education in Detroit, Michigan; Toledo, Ohio; and Chicago, Mundelein, and Elmhurst, Illinois. In Illinois, she was principal for 38 years at Visitation School in Elmhurst, and after retiring from school administration, she volunteered her services in Ministry of Care for Visitation Parish.
Sister Thomas Leo became a resident of the Dominican Life Center in 2014. She was preceded in death by her parents and her siblings, Jean R. Moses, Lois Hauptmann, Robert V. Monahan, and John A. Monahan. She is survived by her brothers, William J. Monahan of Grayslake and James M. Monahan, of McHenry, both in Illinois, as well as loving nieces and nephews and her Adrian Dominican Sisters.
The Vigil Prayer will be held at 7:00 p.m. on Tuesday, November 17, 2020, in St. Catherine Chapel. A Mass of Christian Burial will be offered in St. Catherine Chapel at 10:30 a.m. on Wednesday, November 18, 2020. The Rite of Committal will be in the Congregation cemetery.
Rita was a true Dominican artist preacher. Personally, I found her to be a woman of few words but believe she found her voice in the words of our Franciscan Brother, Francis of Assisi. “Preach always. When necessary, use words.” Rita loudly and clearly proclaimed God’s Word through her art of sacred spaces. These chapels and churches are “living examples” of her pouring out and sharing the fruits of her contemplation.
All the chapels and churches she designed and built with Barbara were not just buildings but projects whose life force built and sustained communities brought together in the process. … We will never know how many folks enter a chapel or church designed by Rita and Barbara and say to themselves: “This is where I meet God.”
These words from Pat Daly, president of the Dominican Institute for the Arts, were a reflection upon the life of Sister Rita Schiltz, who with Sister Barbara Chenicek designed sacred spaces across the U.S. in their INAI Studio for many years.
Rita Celene Schiltz was born on October 6, 1925, in Chicago to Nicholas and Barbara (Droessler) Schiltz. She was the couple’s fifth child and third daughter.
Nicholas was born on a farm near Bancroft, Iowa, while Barbara was born in Kieler, Wisconsin. Her father, like Nicholas’ father a farmer, found the rocky Kieler soil difficult to till, and bought land near Bancroft – down the road from the Schiltz farm. “Dad would go to the Droessler farm to spend time with the boys, and eventually to court Mom,” Sister Rita wrote in her autobiography.
Read more about Sister Rita (pdf)
Memorial gifts may be made to Adrian Dominican Sisters, 1257 East Siena Heights Drive, Adrian, Michigan, 49221.
Soon after Winifred Clare Mary Lynch came into this world at Dr. Mill’s Private Hospital in Morristown, New Jersey, she already had a story to tell for the rest of her life: a grieving woman who had lost her own child came into the hospital nursery and took her.
“According to my mother, [the woman] picked out the most beautiful child!” Sister Winnie, as she was long known, said in her autobiography. “After a frantic search, the nurses found me and returned me to my dear mother.”
Winifred Lynch was born May 25, 1923, to Patrick and Agnes (Regan) Lynch, both of them Irish immigrants. Patrick was born in County Meath, while Agnes came from County Mayo. The couple immigrated to America in the early part of the 20th century and settled near siblings in Morristown. Four children came into the family: Elizabeth (known as Tootsie), Catherine, Winifred, and Peter. Winnie later learned that her mother once spoke of another child born between Catherine and Winnie, but the particulars remained a mystery.
Before Winnie started school, the Lynches moved to Chappaqua, New York, where Patrick worked for a wealthy family. Her early education was at St. Mary School, but when she was in sixth grade, she and Peter transferred to Horace Greeley School in Chappaqua. While she struggled with her experience at St. Mary, she enjoyed her time at Horace Greeley and excelled in field hockey.
“I was told that I was always a lively active child,” she said in her autobiography. But that liveliness made her mishap-prone; once while pretending to be a clown, she put pussy willows into both ears and a piece ended up stuck deep inside one ear. She also put a pitchfork through her foot and, when she was ten years old, fell with a ruler in her mouth and “removed my own tonsils.”
Read more about Sister Winifred (PDF)
Memorial gifts may be made to Adrian Dominican Sisters, 1257 East Siena Heights Drive, Adrian, Michigan, 49221. Funeral arrangements are being handled by Anderson-Marry Funeral Home, Adrian. Obituary.
Vigil for Sister Winifred
Our Adrian Dominican cemetery with its circular headstones is a beautiful place of rest for women who gave their lives in service to God — and a peaceful place for contemplation and remembrance.
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We invite you to meet some of the wonderful women who have recently crossed into eternity.