A memorial Mass for Sister Kathleen Elliott will be celebrated at 10 a.m. Tuesday, Nov. 15, at Nazareth Living Center Chapel in south St. Louis County. Sister Kathleen died Oct. 28 at Nazareth Living Center. She was 88 years old.
Sister Kathleen, baptized Mary Kathleen, was born on Dec. 4, 1933, in Las Vegas, Nevada, to parents Lloyd Elmer and Veronica (De Vany) Elliott. She entered the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet in 1952 and was received into the novitiate in 1953 as Sister Mary Madonna.
She earned a bachelor’s degree in elementary education from Fontbonne College in St. Louis in 1962; a master’s degree in deaf education from Smith College in Northampton, Massachusetts, in 1964; and a master of philosophy in adult Christian community development from Regis University in Denver, Colorado, in 1990.
Sister Kathleen’s mission work began in 1955 in St. Louis as a primary school teacher at St. Edward School, followed by Most Holy Rosary School in 1959. She then taught intermediate students at St. Joseph Institute for the Deaf (SJI) in 1962. Two years later, after receiving her master’s at Smith College, she returned to teach at SJI until 1971.
Sister Kathleen left the classroom for one year to serve as the religious education coordinator for the Diocese of Jefferson City, Missouri. Upon her return to St. Louis, she taught at Notre Dame de Lourdes Grade School in Wellston and then later went to SJI as the religious education coordinator from 1973-77. For the next two years, Sister Kathleen continued ministering to the hearing impaired, establishing the Ministry to the Hearing Handicapped and providing religious instruction for deaf children in the public schools in the Archdiocese of St. Louis.
In 1979, she revisited Jefferson City and served as the religious education coordinator at St. Joseph Cathedral Parish. She moved to Columbia, Missouri, in 1982 to serve in pastoral ministry and religious education at Our Lady of Lourdes Parish.
For the next 20 years, Sister Kathleen served in Colorado. In the Archdiocese of Denver, Sister Kathleen was a pastoral minister at St. Augustine Parish in Brighton (1983-85), Sts. Peter & Paul Parish in Wheat Ridge (1985-88), St. Elizabeth Parish in downtown Denver (1988-1991) and chaplain at St. John Hospice in Lakewood (2004-06).
In the Colorado Springs Diocese, she was a pastoral minister at Sacred Heart Parish (1991-96) and chaplain at Mt. St. Francis Nursing Center (2000-03).
Throughout her mission work, Sister Kathleen also gave workshops in religious education for deaf children nationally and gave a paper at an international convention in Stockholm, Sweden.
Sister Kathleen retired in 2006 in Wheat Ridge, and served as a volunteer. She moved back to St. Louis in 2012, residing at Nazareth Living Center and the Village at Nazareth where she carried out her ministry of prayer and presence.
Sister Kathleen donated her body to science. The memorial Mass will be livestreamed at