Sr. Jeanne Christensen, RSM, will give the eulogy for Sr. Charlene Ross, RSM, at her funeral on Thursday, July 11. She has shared a copy of her eulogy with us. Sr. Charlene will be remembered by many of our alumni. See below the obituary from the RSM community, and a link to her obituary in the Omaha World-Herald.
We are grateful for Sr. Charlene’s many years of service here at St. Peter’s School, and send our prayers and sympathy to the Sisters of the Mercy Midwest Community.
Sisters of Mercy West Midwest Community
Wednesday, July 10, 2019
Celebrating the Life of Sister Mary Charlene Ross
(3-25-1930 ~ 7-8-2019)
TEACHER, PASTORAL ASSOCIATE, DIRECTOR OF RELIGIOUS EDUCATION, TUTOR AND SISTER OF MERCY FOR SEVENTY YEARS
Sister Mary Charlene Ross was born in Kansas City, Missouri, on March 25, 1930, to John and Ruth (Parrish) Ross. She was educated by the Sisters of Mercy and one year after graduating from Glennon High School in Kansas City, she entered the Sisters of Mercy Community in Council Bluffs, Iowa, in 1948.
A graduate of College of Saint Mary, Sister Charlene served as a teacher in elementary schools for 33 years, with an emphasis on music education. She primarily taught in the Diocese of Kansas City/St. Joseph in Missouri. In Kansas City she taught at St. Peter, St. Michael, St. Ann, St. James, Diocese of Kansas City/St. Joseph and Holy Cross/St. Joseph. In Independence she taught at St. Mary’s Academy and St. Ann Parish.
Her love of music inspired her to begin a program in 10 parochial schools in Kansas City to determine how best to use recordings to teach the fundamentals of music to elementary school students. As the diocesan elementary school music supervisor, she would visit each music class once a week.
Other teaching positions were at St. Margaret Mary and St. Patrick in Omaha, Nebraska, Blessed Sacrament in Lincoln, Nebraska and St. Joseph in Denver, Colorado.
According to Sister Jeanne Christensen, friend and former house-mate, Sister Charlene was a pre-eminent educator. “Everything I knew about teaching in elementary school, I learned from her,” Sister Jeanne said. “Her students respected her because she was honest and direct with them. She expected them to do the best they could.”
Her niece, Sister Marilyn Ross, admired her aunt’s honesty and compassion. “I knew her to be a strong and determined woman who always said what she was thinking. She was a strict but compassionate teacher, especially to those who had trouble learning.”
After teaching for over 30 years, Sister Charlene became the pastoral associate at Christ the King Church in Kansas City, Missouri, in 1984. Nine years later she became the director of religious education for St. Catherine Siena Parish in Kansas City.
In 1994, Sister Charlene had the opportunity to teach in Szent Norbert Gimnázium, Hungary, when the U.S. Bishops asked for Sister volunteers to help rebuild the church in Eastern Europe.
After returning from Hungary in 1997, she ministered as a tutor in Gladstone, Missouri. She retired in 2011 and moved to Omaha.
Said Sister Claudette Schiratti, “Sister Charlene served in many capacities in Kansas City. She enjoyed the Sisters getting together and was a marvelous cook, a gracious hostess as well as an avid and deep thinker.”
As she celebrated her 70th Jubilee in 2018, Sister Charlene said, “I am grateful for the places and people I have met over these past 70 years. I always enjoyed teaching and found that having a sense of humor helped. I am truly grateful for having been a Sister of Mercy.”
Funeral services for Sister Charlene will be held at Mercy Villa in Omaha as follows.
Today (Wednesday, July 10)
Coming Home, 10 a.m.
Rosary, 4 p.m.
Vigil, 6:30 p.m.
Tomorrow (Thursday, July 11)
Mass of Resurrection, 10 a.m.
Interment at Resurrection Cemetery after Mass
Followed by luncheon at Mercy Villa