Sister Kathryn Leahy, 99, passed away Friday, October 18, 2019 at Marian Residence in Alliance, Nebraska.
She was born November 11, 1919 at Ewing, Nebraska to Thomas and Barbara (Bauer) Leahy. She was given the name Kathryn Elizabeth.
Sister Kathryn followed the Lord’s call to the Sisters of St. Francis in 1936, and, at the age of 16 went by train to their Mother House at Stella Niagara, New York. Two years of novitiate training introduced her to the ways of Religious Life. In August, 1938 she professed her vows and took the name of Sister M. Bartholomew.
When she completed 3 years of training at a Normal School in Buffalo, NY in 1941 her first teaching assignment brought her to St. Agnes Academy in Alliance, NE for 2 years. She would then be assigned to an inner city school in Denver, St. Elizabeth School. Other assignments would include Immaculate Conception in Rushville, NE, St. Francis Mission, St. Francis, SD and St. Mary’s Academy in O’Neill, NE. During these years she completed her B.A. Degree from St. Ambrose College in Davenport, IA and a M.A. Degree from Creighton University, Omaha. From 1957 to 1962 her duties also included administrative duties at Marycrest in Denver during which time an all-girl Catholic high school was opened.
In 1962 she went to Rome, Italy studying Theology for two years. While there, she witnessed the opening of Vatican II Council, was in St. Peter’s square when Pope John XXIII died and also to be there for the first blessing of Pope Paul VI.
In 1967 Sister Bartholomew changed her name to Sister Kathryn. From 1967 to 1972 she worked with the Diocesan School Office in Grand Island and also a time in Birmingham, AL. Her final work took her back to Marycrest in Denver where she worked in parish ministry in St. Mary Magdalene Parish. During the 1970’s she discovered a passion for writing. Sister Kathryn would later publish her book, “God’s Brat.” In 2005 Sister Kathryn retired and moved to Alliance, Nebraska.
In addition to her parents, her siblings, Thecla, Mary, Ann, John and William preceded her in death. She is survived by numerous nieces and nephews.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be Wednesday, October 23, 2019 at Marian Chapel with Father Tim Stoner officiating. Burial will be in Calvary Cemetery. Wake services will be Tuesday, Oct. 22 at 7:00 p.m. at Marian Chapel.
Online condolences may be left at www.batesgould.com.