Tuesday, July 23, 2024

Obituary: Sister Mary Ada, CSC

Sister Mary Ada, CSC, died October 4 in St. Mary’s Convent, Notre Dame, just 20 days before her 94th birthday.

A native of Lancaster, Sister Mary Ada, the former Theresa Agnes Dennis, was born October 24, 1929, the daughter of Isadore and Agnes (Dochat) Dennis and the youngest of six children. She entered the Congregation of the Sisters of the Holy Cross on January 23, 1948. She made her initial Profession of Vows on August 15, 1950.

Theresa had felt a religious vocation within her since she was in the second grade at St. Joseph School in Lancaster. Her love of God and vivacious personality allowed her to flourish at Lancaster Catholic High School, where she became a Catholic Action representative and was elected class president during her junior year. After graduating high school in 1947, she worked as a secretary for less than a year before entering the Sisters of the Holy Cross, Notre Dame, Indiana, on January 23, 1948. Later that year, she received the religious name of Sister Mary Ada upon reception of the holy habit on August 15, 1948.

From 1950 to 1975, Sister Mary Ada was an elementary school teacher. She taught at parochial schools in Washington, D.C., New York, Pennsylvania, Virginia, North Carolina, and Maryland. In 1966, she earned her bachelor’s degree in elementary education from Dunbarton College of Holy Cross, Washington, D.C.

Later in Sister Mary Ada’s life, she was assigned to begin a ministry of social work at Kimberly Quality Care Nursing Services in Lancaster. From 1986 to 2001, she assisted the elderly with tasks such as laundry and grocery shopping.

After retiring in 2001 to Saint Angela Hall, Kensington, Maryland, she ardently prayed for the needs of the community and the world. She transitioned in 2005 to Saint Mary’s Convent, Notre Dame, Indiana, and began to volunteer within the community. Along with a ministry of prayer and presence, she assisted sisters by passing out mail, guided those in wheelchairs to Mass, and drove sisters to the store.

Services for Sister Mary were held on Thursday, October 12 in the Church of Our Lady of Loretto.

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The deadline for submissions to the biweekly Notebook/Parish Obituaries listing is every other Wednesday at 4:30 p.m. Please refer to the Publication Schedule for edition dates and deadlines.

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