Sr. Katherine Ann Markel, SP
Nov 25, 1923 – Sep 13, 2014
Katherine Ann Markel, SP
(Sister Mary Theodora)
Sr. Katherine Ann Markel, a Sister of Providence for 70 years, died Saturday afternoon, September 13, 2014, at St. Joseph Residence, Seattle, Wash., at age 90. Vigil Service: Wednesday, September 24, 2014, 7:00 p.m., and Funeral Mass: Thursday, September 25, 2014, 11:00 a.m., both at St. Joseph Residence, 4800 37th Ave SW, Seattle, Wash. Burial will be at Calvary Cemetery, Seattle. Bonney-Watson Funeral Home, Seattle, is in charge of the arrangements.
She was born in 1923, the oldest of five children on a farm near Mandan, North Dakota. Her parents, John and Helen (Zander) Markel moved the family to Yakima, Wash. when grasshoppers destroyed their crops. Katherine Ann, then in sixth grade, said descriptions of the Yakima Valley made it sound like the Garden of Eden, beginning a long love affair with the Pacific Northwest. “It is in the West that I really learned that creation is God’s holy altar,” she said.
She entered the novitiate of the Sisters of Providence on May 18, 1944, made her first profession of vows on November 19, 1945, and her final profession on November 19, 1948.
Her first ministry was as a kindergarten teacher at St. Catherine School, Seattle, Wash. She also taught primary grades in Tacoma, Vancouver, Yakima, Burbank and Fairbanks. She left teaching in 1966, and spent 16 years in parish ministry, serving in Coos Bay and Medford, Oregon. She also lived and worked with the elderly and disabled at Providence Vincent House, Seattle, Wash., and served as a teacher aide at Holy Family School, Seattle, Wash.
Sister Katherine Ann was devoted to social justice and helping others. She took part in demonstrations against transport of nuclear weapons to Bangor, and participated in an eye-opening Third World retreat experience in Mexico City and Cuernavaca. In her quiet moments, she turned to things that gave her solace; painting, gardening and reveling in the beauty of nature, especially anything that connected her to the ocean.
She is preceded in death by her parents; her sisters Elizabeth Markel, Helen McVey, and brother John Markel. She is survived by her sister, Vera (Ed) Baumiller, and several nieces and nephews.
Memorial contributions may be made in her honor to the Sisters of Providence Retirement Fund, 1801 Lind Avenue SW, #9016, Renton, WA 98057-9016.
This obituary is provided by Bonney-Watson, providing caring and compassionate funeral, cremation and cemetery services since 1868. We have a professional staff, four funeral homes, two cremation facilities and one of the largest cemeteries south of Seattle, as well as a comprehensive grief support program.