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As I thought about the Gospel of the Good Shepherd in relation to Anne’s life, it just made such good sense. … The shepherd was there, no matter what happened. The shepherd spoke to the sheep, sang to them, was present for their every need. The sheep recognized the shepherd’s voice, and would come when called. Each night, the shepherd counted the flock, just in case there was one who had strayed. Each one of the sheep was family.
… Sister Anne taught music and was a choir director for many years. In fact, her last choir came to visit us couple of years ago and sang for her and for all of us. Anne loved being among them. They recognized her voice as she spoke to them, as she sang to them and with them. It’s not unusual, then, that she had a devotion of Jesus as the “good shepherd.”
These words spoken by Sister Maria Goretti Browne opened her homily for Sister Anne Cenci and described Sister Anne’s relationship not only with her former students and parishioners but with her fellow Adrian Dominican Sisters as well. As Sister Maria Goretti’s homily continued,
A few birthdays ago, her sister, Marian, wanted Anne to have a lovely dinner at Red Lobster. Marian knew that this was a favorite of Anne. But Anne wanted to share, so she ordered, not a meal, but appetizers. There were enough so that each Sister in her 3rd floor dining room was able to share in the treat… But that was Anne, the thoughtful, caring, good shepherd!
Read more about Sister Anne (pdf)
Memorial gifts may be made to Adrian Dominican Sisters, 1257 East Siena Heights Drive, Adrian, Michigan, 49221.
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A childhood spent on Chicago’s North Side, with a large and loving family and under the tutelage of the Adrian Dominican Sisters at Queen of Angels School, gave Sister Sally Ann Fergus the perfect early grounding in life.
Sarah Ann, as she was baptized although she was always known as Sally, was born on September 21, 1937, to Rosaleen (Stratton) and William Fergus, a Chicago tavern owner. She was the fifth of seven children, with three brothers (William, Patrick and Thomas) and three sisters (Rosemary, Eileen, and Maureen). “We often speak of our family as the first five and the second two,” she wrote in her autobiography, because there was a five-year gap between her arrival and that of Maureen, and then another two years before Patrick came into the family.
“It made a big difference in our lives,” she wrote, because the two younger children “got to do so much more than we did – like travel to Ireland with my parents.”
Sally Ann and her siblings enjoyed a wonderful childhood with plenty of playmates in the neighborhood and activities including roller-skating around the block and trips to the library, the beach, the local park and, as they got older, Riverview Park to enjoy the rides. During the World War II years, her mother not only tended a garden plot in the backyard but also had a Victory Garden in “the prairie” (the Chicago term for an empty lot).
Read more about Sister Sally Ann (pdf)
Her seeming endless energy, intense love of the Dominican charism and the Congregation were an inspiration. She mentored many along the way who have not forgotten her wisdom and goodness.
These words from Sister Rosemary Asaro, Holy Rosary Chapter Assistant, were part of her eulogy for Sister Margaret (Marge) Mehigan, who spent many years teaching others about the mission and vision of the Congregation and helping them integrate it into their everyday lives and work.
Margaret Mary Mehigan was born on August 31, 1926, in Chicago to John and Hannah (Doherty) Mehigan. John and Hannah had both come to Chicago from Ireland, John from County Cork and Hannah from County Donegal, and met at St. Sabina Parish, one of Chicago’s traditionally Irish parishes.
After they married, the young couple settled in St. Kilian Parish, another home for Chicago’s Irish community. In time, four children arrived; in addition to Marge, there was John, Owen, and Anna Marie, who in time became a Springfield Dominican Sister.
Read more about Sister Marge (pdf)
One interesting coincidence brought Sister Pauline Richter’s parents together in New Mexico. A second interesting coincidence brought her to the Adrian Dominicans twenty years later.
Mary Pauline Richter, Sister Pauline’s mother, had moved to Albuquerque from Nebraska, when Mary was about nine years old. Otto, Sister Pauline’s father, had a sister who had come to New Mexico from their native southern Illinois to be treated for tuberculosis, and a couple of the brothers had moved there with her. When one of those brothers got married, Otto came to Albuquerque for the wedding. He was the best man – and Mary was one of the bridesmaids.
The couple married in February 1933 and Pauline was born on December 10 of that year. She was baptized Anna Pauline because both of her grandmothers were named Anna, and Pauline for her mother’s middle name, but she was always known as Pauline. Three other girls – Nadine, Maxine, and Norma – followed over the course of the next fourteen years. In August 1947, two months before Norma was born, Otto died of a heart attack. He was just thirty-nine years old.
Read more about Sister Pauline (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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We invite you to meet some of the wonderful women who have recently crossed into eternity.