A memorial Mass for Sister Anna Bridget Kearns will be celebrated at 10 a.m. Monday, Nov. 21 at Nazareth Living Center Chapel in south St. Louis County. Sister Anna Bridget died Nov. 3 at Nazareth Living Center. She was 92 years old.
The memorial Mass will be livestreamed at video.ibm.com/channel/csjsl-general.
Sister Anna Bridget, baptized Anna Patricia, was born on May 19, 1930, in Augusta, Georgia, to Timothy Joseph and Johanna Agnes (Bartley) Kearns, the seventh of nine children. She grew up in a loving Irish, Catholic family and attended Mount St. Joseph Catholic elementary and high schools, staffed by the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet. Anna’s mother always prayed that one of her daughters would become a religious sister and was delighted when Anna responded to the call.
Anna was received into the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet in 1948 with the name Sister Anna Bridget. She earned a bachelor’s degree in elementary education from Fontbonne College (now University) in St. Louis in 1959 and a master’s degree in elementary education from the University of Hawaii in Honolulu in 1969. Further studies included Xavier University in New Orleans and Christian Brothers University in Memphis.
Sister Anna Bridget ministered in elementary education for more than 55 years in Georgia, Hawaii, Massachusetts and Missouri, including in the Archdiocese of St. Louis. She served 50 of those as a teacher and five as an administrator.
The first 10 years of her ministry work was in the Archdiocese of Atlanta, Georgia, followed by the Diocese of Savannah, Georgia. In 1960, Sister Anna moved to the Hawaiian island of Oahu, where she served as a teacher for nine years.
She came back to the mainland and went on to teach in the Archdiocese of St. Louis at Holy Guardian Angels School (1969-70) and St. Roch School (1970-73). Sister Anna then served in the Boston neighborhood of Roxbury, where she taught for eight years. In 1981, she returned to Atlanta as a teacher and principal.
In 1989, after being on sabbatical for nearly a year, Sister Anna Bridget continued teaching in Atlanta until 1993. She then went back to St. Francis Xavier School in Brunswick, Georgia, where she fulfilled her ministry as a teacher.
Sister Anna Bridget retired in 2006. She remained in Brunswick and served as a volunteer for 13 years. She ministered with people who were homeless, in hospice care and shut-ins. Once a week, she would spend a day at St. Francis, helping the third grade teacher whom she taught in third grade.
Since 2019, Sister Anna resided at Nazareth Living Center in St. Louis, carrying out her mission of prayer and presence.
Burial was in Resurrection Cemetery.