Sister Catherine Ann Schwemer, Poor Handmaid of Jesus Christ, died on February 22, 2023, surrounded by Sisters and family. Sr. Cathy died after an extended illness.
As the oldest of eight children of Donald and Gloria Schwemer, Sr. Cathy was born in Chelmsford, Essex, England. Her parents, brother Johnny and sister Debra all preceded her in death. Sr. Cathy is survived by her brothers Donald (Virginia) and Timothy and sisters Jackie Graham, Betty Homan, and Vicki Schwemer as well as numerous nieces and nephews.
Sr. Cathy entered the Poor Handmaids of Jesus Christ on August 17, 1986, and professed vows on September 3, 1989.
She received an Associate’s Degree from Muskegon Business College, a Bachelor of Arts in Religious Studies from Mundelein College in Chicago, and a Master of Arts in Pastoral Study from Washington Theological Union. With a focus on collaborating with partners and serving in whatever ways Sr. Cathy was needed, her varied ministries included the following: Pastoral Associate/Director of Religious Education at St. Mary’s Church in Trenton, Illinois PHJC Associate Director; Coordinator for Sisters; Executive Director of North American Conference of Associates and Religious; Marketing and Program Coordinator at Lindenwood Retreat Center. Most recently, Sr. Cathy offered freelance retreat work and spiritual direction.
Sr. Cathy expressed her spirituality and creativity as an iconographer and often gave the reflective images of saints to others as gifts. Her icons helped us pause and pray. We will miss Sr. Cathy’s physical presence among us, though we know she is still with us in spirit.
When reflecting on Silver Jubilee in 2014, Sr. Cathy said, “I have been blessed by the sharing of my life with a variety of people, family, friends, community members, co-workers, and mentors. Each one has left an imprint on me as I have journeyed through my life; some good, some painful, all teaching me and molding me into the person I am today.”
Wake and Funeral Services will be held in Ancilla Domini Chapel, Donaldson, IN. Directions best through this address: 9601 Union Road, Plymouth, IN. All times are EST:
Friday, March 3, 2023
• 6:30 – 7:00 pm Visitation
• 7:00 – 8:30 pm Wake Service, Followed by Visitation
Saturday, March 4, 2023
• 10:00 – 11:00 am Visitation
• 11:00 am Mass of Christian Burial
For those unable to attend in person, the Mass of Christian Burial will be live-streamed at www.poorhandmaids.org/live
Memorial contributions to the Poor Handmaids of Jesus Christ, P.O. Box #1, Donaldson, IN 46513 or on www.poorhandmaids.org
Caryn Durski, Funeral Director
Shirley Gidley says
A brightsoul! Alive or deceased she made an imprint on many lives . May she continue to an inspiration to those who knew her.
White Pigeon Alumni Association says
Our prayers and deepest sympathy to Cathy’s family and friends.
Ron Bollman says
Sister, may you be judge worthy to enter the arms of Jesus during this precious time of the Lenten Season. You truly servers the Lords people and his church very well. Thank you for that. May your family and all of your Sisters in Christ celebrate with the joy of the risen Christ in their hearts.
Lisa, Ernani and Amelia says
She was a wonderful friend to my Aunt and to me and my little family too. We will always treasure the time we had with her, her waffles, our many conversations together, teaching my daughter to knit, our shared love of cats, and her love for us, our family, and my Aunt.