Sisters honor elders with ‘90s Party!’
For more than two decades, the Sisters of Providence have honored their elders with the annual “90s Party!”
On Monday, Aug. 3, more than 30 sisters and four other people from their “extended family” were honored during the ceremony in the dining hall at Providence Hall.
“This is a great event,” General Councilor Sister Mary Beth Klingel said. “It brings everybody together. Reaching 90 years old is a pretty significant milestone.”
Besides the guests of honor, many packed the dining hall, including staff members, Providence Associates, relatives and sisters, some of whom served as companions for their elders.
The party began with a parody of the song, “Alouette,” followed by a greeting from Vicar Sister Lisa Stallings.
Father Daniel Hopcus then offered a prayer before everyone broke into a parody of “Alice Blue Gown.”
Then, representatives from the Sisters of Providence archives department offered blessings for all the recognized sisters and other honored guests by their year of birth.
Following the presentation, everyone sang songs and refreshments were served.
Sister Mary Michael Lager, 96, said she ministered as a pharmacist at the sisters’ motherhouse for “quite a few years,” adding her time as a Sister of Providence has been many years well spent.
“It’s been wonderful,” Sister Mary Michael said.
Sister Rita Lerner, 94, echoed Sister Mary Michael’s sentiments.
“I’ve always been happy,” Sister Rita said. “I enjoyed my work. I enjoy life.”
Sister Rita, who ministered for several years as a teacher, added that during one year teaching third-graders, she had 64 students in her classroom.
Sister Martha Steidl was another sister who was recognized. Monday’s event was her first as she recently turned 90.
She ministered at Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College for several years in various capacities, adding the Sisters of Providence “fit my spirituality very well.”
“The aim is to give yourself to God,” Sister Martha said. “I’ve used everything I have learned. This has been a good relationship. The bottom line is, God called me.”
In addition to Sister Martha, Sister Mary Michael and Sister Rita, Sisters Mary Esther Lane, Marceline Mattingly, Mary Terence Haag, Mary Loyola Bender, Mary Imelda Coulup, Charles Ellen Turk, Jane Bodine, Adrian Marie Conrad, Marilyn Therese Lipps, Mary Roger Madden Helen Dolores Losleben, Rose Marita Riordan, Kathleen Mary Gay, Regina Shaughnessy, Richard Bussing, Annette Schipp, Marie Victoria Podesta, Bernadette Mary Carroll, Marie David Schroeder, Eileen Clare Goetzen, Anne Krause, Francis Edwards, Miriam Clare Stoll, Agnes Eugene Cordak, Martha Ann Rifner, Mary Patricia Cummings, Michaela Galvin, Ann Kevin O’Connor, Mildred Giesler and Louise Schroeder were all recognized, as well as “extended family” members Frank Bussing, long-time volunteer with the sisters, and John Pine, Marian Richardson and Marianne Frey, residents in Providence Health Care.