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Sr. Genevieve Merrick

Nov 18, 2016


Sister M. Genevieve Merrick

Oct. 20, 1924-Nov. 6, 2016

Sister M. Genevieve Merrick, OSF, 92, passed away Sunday, November 6, at St. Gerard’s Community of Care, Hankinson, following a long illness.

Sister Genevieve Merrick and her twin sister, Mercedes, were born at Kent, Minnesota on October 20, 1924. Six days later they were baptized at St. Thomas Church in

Kent. Sister always credited her parents, Joseph and Mary (Nordick) Merrick, with giving their children a rich spiritual heritage. Sister said, “Daily Holy Mass and recita-

tion of the Rosary gave us a love for Jesus in the Eucharist and for our Blessed Mother.”

It was in grade school that Sister Genevieve first felt drawn to religious life. Sister Genevieve always credited her parents and the influence of Father Henry Warmers with encouraging this desire. She had two sisters who also entered religious life – Sister Mary James and Sister Therese.

Sister attended elementary school in Kent, and received her high school education at St. Francis Academy in Hankinson. After graduation, she entered the novitiate of her Franciscan congregation. She made her first profession of vows on July 24, 1944, and her perpetual profession on August 4, 1947.

Sister Genevieve received her BSE degree from Alverno College in Milwaukee. Sister continued her education at Mundelein College, Chicago, Illinois; Regis College, Denver, Colorado; Mount Marty, Yankton, South Dakota, and later took courses from UND in Grand Forks. She taught nearly 60 years in North Dakota schools at St.

Francis Academy in Hankinson; Selz Public School; Holy Family in Grand Forks; St. John’s in Wahpeton; and a total of 32 years at Little Flower School in Rugby. After

her retirement, she remained in Rugby from 2006-2012 serving as Directress of Novices for the Hankinson Province.

During all her years in the community she gave generously of herself in many ways including terms as local superior, as a member of the advisory formation team; as a

representative on the Province Renewal Committee and on the Diocesan Council for Women Religious.

Her service to God’s people also reached beyond the schools and her community. She served on the Diocesan Seminary Board and the Diocesan Council for Education. Always ready to meet needs, she taught religion classes at the Wahpeton Indian School; junior high CCD classes; vacation school; adult classes on Scripture and acted as a facilitator for the Lay Ministry Program. Sister Genevieve was very active in the Cursillo movement where she was the assistant spiritual director for women’s Cur-

sillo at Harvey, Belcourt, and Turtle Mountain Crossroads for many years. Those who knew her here affectionately called her “Sister Gem.” Even with all of her various duties, Sister Genevieve found time to spread the Good News of God’s love by sharing at prayer meetings, singing in the choir; organizing a contemporary music group in Wahpeton and working with teens in the Quest program in Rugby. For twenty years she was a leader in the Life in the Spirit Seminars in Rugby.

Sister said one of the greatest blessings throughout her long life was the gift of Christ’s Eucharistic Presence in every convent in which she had lived. “His Presence and that of our loving Father, together with our dear Mother Mary, and the love poured out by the Holy Spirit, have been a source of strength and joy in my life.”

Sister Genevieve is survived by the Franciscan Sisters of Dillingen, local nephews Michael (Mary) Jacklitch, Bruce (Pam) Jacklitch, and niece Mary Jo (Tom) Locket, and other nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her parents, Joseph and Mary Merrick, and siblings: Joseph, Raymond and Paul Merrick, Mercedes Jacklitch, Sister Mary James Merrick and Sister Therese Merrick.

Visitation will be from 2:30-4:30 p.m. Monday, November 14, 2016 with a Prayer Service at 7:00 p.m. at St. Francis Convent Chapel, Hankinson. The funeral Mass of

Christian Burial will take place at 10 a.m. Tuesday, November 15th, 2016. Burial will be in St. Francis Convent Cemetery.

Frank Family Funeral Home, Hankinson, ND is in charge of the arrangements.

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