Sister Mary Felten, OSB, 83, died on August 23, 2017 at the Benedictine Living Community in Duluth.
She was born Mary Catherine Felten on July 3, 1934, to Henry and Eleanore (Schwoerer) Felten at their family farm home in East Wrightstown, Wisconsin. She was the fourth of six children, and the oldest girl. A gifted student, Sister Mary was recruited to come to The College of St. Scholastica by Sister Monica Simon and Sister Prudentia Moran.
Sister Mary loved the Divine Office and the prayer of the Sisters, and felt drawn to Benedictine life. She loved teaching and attained many degrees to prepare herself for the ministry of education from the University of Wisconsin, Superior; B.S. in Education (1961), M.S. in Education Administration (1966), and M.S. in Counseling for Education with a specialty in Psychological Counseling (1973). Her deep love for the Church prompted her to pursue post-graduate training in Theology, Scriptural Studies, and Liturgy as well as several certificates in Religious Education.
Sister Mary served as a teacher at St. Thomas, International Falls and Our Lady of Victory, Minneapolis. She was a counselor at St. Bridget’s in Minneapolis and The College of St. Scholastica. She served as principal for St. Mary’s School in Stockbridge, Wisconsin, St. Hubert’s in Hubertus, Wisconsin, and St. Mary’s School in Richland Center, Wisconsin. She was assisted in her ministry by her dear friend Sister Valeria Lessard, OSB.
Sister Mary and Sister Valeria returned to the monastery in 1997, having “retired.” Sister Mary taught religion for several years at the Cathedral School in Superior, Wisconsin. She coordinated the hospitality ministry of the Information Desk for many years. She was a generous volunteer outdoors as well, harvesting and trimming rhubarb and caring for the Stations of the Cross in the Sisters’ cemetery. She loved nature, and when she was well, she would rarely let a day go by without going for a walk. She also loved to visit our cabin at Lake Placid and enabled many infirm Sisters to get up to the lake to enjoy the beauty of creation. She loved wildlife, but had an especially soft spot for her “bunnies.”
When she was well, she loved traveling with Sister Valeria to visit Valeria’s family in Canada. She also enjoyed classical music and reading, and was a very faithful correspondent, never missing special occasions for her family and the Sisters.
She was preceded in death by her parents and her brothers, George and Leo. She is survived by her sister, Ann; her brothers, Walter and Jerome; many other family members and friends, and the Sisters of St. Scholastica Monastery.
Morning Prayer and Wake Service, 10:00 a.m. on Friday, September 1, 2017, in Our Lady Queen of Peace Chapel at St. Scholastica Monastery.
The Mass of Christian Burial will follow at 11:00 a.m. The presider will be Father Kevin Gordon of the Diocese of Superior. Burial will be at Gethsemane Cemetery.
Memorials to St. Scholastica Monastery are preferred. Arrangements are by Dougherty Funeral Home.