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OBITUARY | Sister Francis Rose Rivers, SSND

Sr. Rivers
Sister Francis Rose Rivers, SSND, died July 25 at the age of 84. She was a principal, provincial councilor and chaplain and a member of the School Sisters of Notre Dame for more than six decades.

The seventh of nine children, she was born to Trinidad (Vasquez) and Frank Rivers in Tulare, California, on May 8, 1936. She attended Lincoln Elementary School in Tulare and received religious instructions from the Missionary Sisters of Our Lady of Victory.

In 1948, the School Sisters of Notre Dame came to teach in the new parish school. She had accelerated two grades and was placed in the eighth grade at St. Aloysius School. With her parents’ approval, at 13 years of age, she left her family, traveled alone on the train and entered the aspiranture the following September. She completed her high school education in three years at Notre Dame High School in St. Louis.

She entered the candidature on Aug. 23, 1952 at age 16. During the second semester, she was sent to Sacred Heart in Rich Fountain, Missouri, to teach. She was received into the novitiate on Aug. 1, 1953 and given the name Mary Francis Rose. She professed first vows on Aug. 2, 1954 and final vows on Aug. 2, 1960.

Sister Francis Rose earned a bachelor’s degree in English from Immaculate Heart College, Los Angeles, in 1966; a master’s degree in English from San Fernando Valley State, California, in 1967 and a master’s degree in education from the University of California, Northridge, California, in 1984. She spent over 40 years in Catholic education as teacher and principal in California and Illinois. From 1979-83, she served as a member of the St. Louis Provincial Council.

In 2003, Sister Francis Rose transitioned from formal education to parish ministry, serving Hispanics in rural Missouri. She ministered at Sacred Heart Parish, Verona and Holy Trinity Parish, Aurora. She also ministered as chaplain at the Tyson Foods’ chicken processing plant in Monett, Missouri.

In 2007, she received the Distinguished Alumna Award from Notre Dame High School in St. Louis.

A burial service was held at Theresa Center in St. Louis, with burial in the Sancta Maria in Ripa Cemetery in St. Louis.

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OBITUARY Sister Francis Rose Rivers SSND 5619

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