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When she was young and pondering religious life, Mary Irene Moser, the future Sister Charlotte Francis, told her mother she wanted to be a Sister-nurse. The only obstacle was that she didn’t actually know how to go about that, because she was unaware what community she could enter that would give her that opportunity. Who she did know, on the other hand, were the Adrian Dominican Sisters who taught her at Our Lady of Good Counsel School in Chicago.
Ultimately, she said in her 2017 “A Sister’s Story” video, “God fulfilled, because I was a teacher and I worked at the hospital.”
Mary Irene was born on March 24, 1934, in Chicago to Francis and Charlotte (Mazur) Moser, in the southwest section of the city close enough to a variety of industrial operations that the smells of everything from Wrigley’s gum to Nabisco cookies to the Swift meatpacking plant wafted past. She was the oldest of six, followed by John, Frank, Jerome, Walter, and Sandra, who was born after she entered the Congregation.
After grade school at Our Lady of Good Counsel, she attended St. Joseph High School, where she was taught by the Felician Sisters, for a year. Her long experience with the Adrian Dominican Sisters inspired her, and she enrolled in the Congregation’s “prep” program in the summer of 1949. She became a postulant that September and was received as a novice and given her religious name, Sister Charlotte Francis in honor of her parents, in August 1950.
Read more about Sister Charlotte (pdf)
Memorial gifts may be made to Adrian Dominican Sisters, 1257 East Siena Heights Drive, Adrian, Michigan, 49221.
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Detroit, Michigan, and later the adjacent city of Grosse Pointe Farms were home to the large and devout Sutherland family, including the daughter who would later become Sister Kathleen.
Kathleen Marie, known to her family and friends as Kay, was born on June 25, 1932, to Ariel and Helen (Holmes) Sutherland. Ariel was born in Detroit, but his mother had died when he was very young and he was placed in an orphanage and eventually adopted by a Canadian family who needed an extra hand for their farm.
Ariel soon decided farm life was not for him, and he moved to Detroit at the age of eighteen. He and Helen, a Canadian native who was a schoolteacher in Ontario, married in Canada and settled on Detroit’s east side in St. Martin Parish.
The couple’s first child, a girl they named Mary Lois, died at just eight days old. Kathleen came next, and assumed the role of oldest sibling to nine more children: Marilyn Veronica, Thomas James, Mary Ann, Margaret Therese, John Joseph, Francis Patrick, Marion Cecilia, Judith Agnes, and Daniel Paul. John died of a brain tumor at the age of eight.
Read more about Sister Kay (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.
Sister's Prayer Card (PDF)
Worship Aid (PDF)
Download video. Videos will be posted for 4-6 weeks, then removed.
I lay claim to being pure “Dominican” from birth.
Marilyn Rita Shinkey, the future Sister Ann Rena, was not only the daughter of a mother born to Italian-immigrant parents, but her mother’s name – Rena Dominic – even fit the bill.
Born in Streator, Illinois, on August 31, 1933, Marilyn was the only child of Rena and Frederick Shinkey. Frederick was born in Paxton, Illinois, and had farmed and ranched out West before returning to his home state and settling in Streator, where he worked as a plant foreman.
Marilyn’s childhood was a happy, active one. She loved sports and anything to do with the outdoors. From the age of ten she knew she wanted to be a teacher, and because of her athletic as well as academic abilities, she earned scholarships in both areas to Illinois State University. She earned her bachelor’s degree in education, majoring in physical education, in 1955.
“Only the hand of God could account for my next move,” she wrote in her autobiography. After graduating from college, she was hired to teach physical education and social studies at Mount St. Mary Academy. It was her introduction to the Adrian Dominican Sisters, as well as something of a re-introduction to Catholicism in general; her parents were both lapsed Catholics, and although she had been baptized and made her first Communion she had not been confirmed. “Needless to say, that was completed in my three years at the Mount,” she wrote.
Read more about Sister Ann Rena (pdf)
Lisa was a gentle, humble woman. She had challenges but she always met them head on with noteworthy patience, never complaining, moving forward even if the pace had to be slower. Her self-acceptance gave her the unique perspective and opportunity to be with others where they were.
This description of Sister Mary Lisa Rieman comes from her funeral homily, written by Sister Mary Jane Lubinski about a woman whose family and friends remembered her as loving, generous with her time and talents – and always up for a spirited game of Rummikub.
Elizabeth Louise Rieman was born on July 1, 1941, in Leipsic, Ohio, to Leo and Kathryn (Schroeder) Rieman, the son and daughter of farming families who lived near each other. She was the oldest of five, followed by Dorothy, Donald, Stephen, and Joseph, and the multi-generational home also included Leo’s parents.
Leo farmed 150 acres and raised a variety of animals, and as is typical of farm families, everyone pitched in to do the work. Sister Lisa wrote in her life story that she learned to milk a cow when she was about six years old.
Read more about Sister Mary Lisa (PDF)
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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