Remembrances

Sister Margaret Mary Knittel, Age 80

West Midwest

Tuesday, September 8, 2020

Sister Margaret Mary entered the Sisters of Mercy at the age of 22. She continued her education by earning certifications, degrees and advanced degrees in spiritual direction, theology, human resources and education.

Sister Margaret Mary’s first ministry was teaching at Mother McAuley High School in her hometown of Chicago, Illinois. Sister Sue Sanders remembers having her as a teacher. “For me, as a high school freshman, Sister Kilian Mary was a dynamic, energetic, and renowned mathematics teacher. An excellent writer, yes, but she was also a poet, whimsical and profound.”

From Mother McAuley, Sister Margaret Mary taught at Marquette High School in Ottawa, Illinois. From 1970 to 1976, she served as associate director of religious education for the Diocese of Rockford, Illinois, and then was named the director of operations at ACTA/Life in Christ (Adult Catechetical Teaching Aids) in Chicago.

In 1980, Sister Margaret Mary was called to Saint Xavier College (now University) to serve as the personnel director. She did this for seven years until enrolling in the Catholic Theological Institute, where she earned her master of divinity. This led her to St. Mary Parish in Chicago, where she was the director of religious education while assisting several diverse ministries.

She served as a grant consultant at Presence Mercy Medical Center in Aurora, Illinois, for 15 years and was active on many boards. She also dedicated any extra time to the Iowa Writers Workshop and was especially interested in the poems of Emily Dickinson. 

After retiring from full-time ministry obligations, Sister Margaret Mary was tapped by the West Midwest to serve as a convener for the Chicago 2 Consultation Networks. She came to know numerous Sisters from Michigan to California through this leadership role.

Sister Margaret Mary will be remembered for her humor, insightfulness and kindness.

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