Four Presentation sisters celebrating jubilees
by - 6/15/2012
Four Presentation sisters from Presentation Heights, Aberdeen, will celebrate jubilees of profession this summer.
Sister Lois Ann Sargent, PBVM, is a native of Winner and the daughter of John and Evelyn (Budde) Sargent.
“The call to religious life is a sense, an urge or an answer to the inner voice of God saying that it might be the life for you,” Sister Lois Ann said. “I responded after finishing one year at Notre Dame Jr. College. A sister reminded me that I could try it and be a postulant for a year. It felt right from the beginning, I have no regrets, my family is proud of me and I felt fulfilled in my decision to be a religious for a lifetime. I believe I have lived my religious call each day since my profession in 1954 whether in the classroom, in public and now as the archivist for the Congregation. I think I have been a faithful, prayerful and authentic Presentation Sister for these 60 years. I am proud to be a member of this religious community.
Sister Madonna Pierret, PBVM, was born in Garretson to Les and Martha (Dubbelde) Pierret.
“I started my religious education in two-week summer school at St. Rose of Lima Church in Garretson,” Sister Madonna said. “Sister Alexius took us in a cattle truck to see the movie ‘The Song of Bernadette.’ My mother was a chaperone and Father John McEneany encouraged me to consider being a sister.
“I was a daily Mass goer. I received a scholarship to McKennan Nursing program and had preclinical at (Avera) St. Luke’s Hospital,” she said. “I met Sister Bonaventure and Sister Ann here, whom inspired me to become a sister. Sister Annrita and Sister Corita impressed me; they were in our class.”
Sister Helen Nemmers, PBVM, was born in Granville, IA, to Joseph and Magdalen (Roeder) Nemmers and raised in Dell Rapids.
“I had one brother priest and another in the seminary when I decided to enter the order of the Presentation Sisters of the Blessed Virgin Mary, following my sister, Sister Gertrude who worked in hospital ministry,” said Sister Helen. “The Presentation Sisters in Dell Rapids, who inspired me, had taught me for 12 years.”
She joined the community in 1941. “I joined the Sisters in Aberdeen and was educated to be a music teacher,” she said. “After 40 years, to my joy and God’s call, Sister Gabriella Crowley and I spent 17 years in Tlacoachistlahuaca, Guerrero, Mexico, evangelizing. I am now celebrating 70 years of vowed life.”
Sister Dominic Stoltz, PBVM, was born in Emery to Seth and Mary (Wethor) Stoltz.
She graduated from Emery High School and entered Presentation Convent on September 1,1936.
“I lived three blocks from the Catholic Church growing up and attended daily Mass. After high school, I entered the three-year RN program at St. Joseph Hospital in Mitchell, South Dakota,” Sister Dominic said.
“I considered religious life many times, but it was hearing my mother’s words of encouragement that made me realize with a certainty that it was my true vocation,” she said. “I entered Presentation Convent two weeks after completing the RN program.”
“Many times since then I have said to the Lord, ‘I thank you a trillion, trillion times for the gift of faith and for my religious vocation.’ While serving the healthcare ministry as a nurse for nearly 60 years, I had the wonderful experience of delivering thousands of babies. The blessings of religious life are too numerous to mention. I am eternally grateful for this life.”