In the tradition of the Catholic Church, the word “Jubilee” is used to designate an anniversary year. A special reverence continues to be held for milestone anniversaries of religious life as they signify a strong vocation and commitment of giving one’s life to serve God and others.
Sister Mary Edmund Speer
A native of Butler, Sister Mary Edmund Speer entered the Sisters of Charity on September 8, 1945, from Saint Paul Parish. She earned a bachelor’s degree in mathematics from Seton Hill University and a master’s degree in chemistry from Xavier University, Cincinnati. Sister Mary Edmund taught secondary school students in the dioceses of Altoona-Johnstown, Greensburg, and Pittsburgh. From 1980 until 1990, she taught students at Butler Catholic School on a part-time basis, while she ministered part-time at Saint Paul Parish. After retiring from the classroom in 1993, Sister Mary Edmund served as a pastoral minister at Saint Paul Parish until 2010. Sister Mary Edmund was recognized by the Diocese of Pittsburgh in January 2001 with the Manifesting the Kingdom Award presented by Bishop Donald W. Wuerl. When Sister Mary Edmund left Butler after thirty-one years of ministry there, the Rotary Club of Butler County honored her with the Paul Harris Fellowship Award. Hardworking, caring, and prayerful, Sister Mary Edmund continues to serve in the mailroom and at the reception desk at the motherhouse, Caritas Christi.
Sister M. Philomena Mannion
Sister M. Philomena Mannion entered the Sisters of Charity on September 8, 1945, from Saint Mary Magdalene Parish, Homestead. She earned a bachelor’s degree in education/psychology from Wayne State University and a master’s degree in education/philosophy from the Catholic University of America. Sister was a teacher and administrator from 1945 until 1995, with 44 of those years spent at The DePaul School for Hearing and Speech. During her tenure there, she served as teacher (1951-1969), principal (1969-1981), and director (1981-1995). Under her watch, DePaul changed from a residential school to a day school and extended services to include early intervention for infants. Speech, language, and audiology services were expanded and psychological, physical, and occupational therapy services were added. DePaul pioneered education for children with cochlear implants and was named a Magnet School for Hearing Loss. Since 1997, Sister M. Philomena has served as a chaplain at Country Meadows Retirement Communities in Bridgeville. Humble and unassuming, Sister M. Philomena, is the recipient of numerous awards, including the 2007 DePaul School of Hearing and Speech Star Award.
Sister M. Ellenita O’Connor
Sister M. Ellenita O’Connor entered the Sisters of Charity of Seton Hill on September 8, 1945, from Holy Cross Parish, South Side. She earned a bachelor’s degree in education from Seton Hill University and a master’s degree in business administration from the University of Notre Dame. Sister taught in schools of the Pittsburgh and Greensburg dioceses and the Archdiocese of Baltimore. Sister ministered for nine years as principal of the former Elizabeth Seton High School in Brookline. After leaving the classroom in 1976, she served as planning director and treasurer of the congregation. In 1989, she began a three-year tenure as the manager of Saint Joseph House of Hospitality in the Hill District. Pittsburgh Mayor Sophie Masloff named Sister M. Ellenita to the Board of the Housing Authority of Pittsburgh and recognized her for distinguished service in the field of housing and redevelopment. Sister returned to Greensburg in 1992 and continued to use her gifts to serve her congregation as project manager for the building of the motherhouse, Caritas Christi, and as a consultant for special projects.
Sister Agnes Steedle
A Pittsburgh native, Sister Agnes Steedle entered the congregation of the Sisters of Charity on September 8, 1945, from Holy Innocents Parish in Sheraden. She earned a bachelor’s degree (chemistry, Spanish) from Seton Hill University, a master’s degree (chemistry, physics, biology) from Purdue University, and a master’s degree in theology from Saint Mary’s University, San Antonio, TX. Sister Agnes taught in schools of Altoona-Johnstown, Greensburg, Phoenix, Pittsburgh, and Tucson dioceses. She was principal at Saint James School, Apollo and was the director of religious education in the Catholic Church of Preston County, WV, and at Saint John Evangelist Parish, Tucson, AZ. In 1998, Sister Agnes began ministry as the Attendance Officer at Greensburg Central Catholic High School. After her retirement, she volunteered at the reception desk at Jeannette District Memorial Hospital and at the Administrative Offices of the Sisters of Charity. Outgoing and generous, Sister Agnes continues to serve her community with fund-raising projects.
Sister Joan Marie Madden
A native of Pittsburgh, Sister Joan Marie Madden, a native of Pittsburgh, entered the congregation of the Sisters of Charity on January 1, 1946, from Assumption Parish in Bellevue. . She earned a bachelor’s degree in history and English from Seton Hill University and a master’s degree in library science from Duquesne University. Sister Joan Marie taught students of the junior and senior high school level in schools of the Greensburg, Phoenix, Pittsburgh, and Tucson dioceses. Her longest tenure was at Seton High School in Chandler, AZ where she ministered, alternately, as teacher, librarian and registrar, until 2009. In May 1996, Sister Joan Marie was presented the “Elizabeth Seton Award” in recognition of her commitment, dedication and leadership to the mission of Seton Catholic High School in Chandler. Endowed with a beautiful singing voice, Sister Joan Marie ministered as a cantor and belonged to choral groups. Devoted to the Holy Eucharist, she believes, as did Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton, “In Holy Communion our hearts are the tabernacles of the Divinity.”