A funeral Mass for Sister Mary Kathleen Dowling was celebrated April 12 in the Holy Family Chapel of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet motherhouse in St. Louis. Sister Mary Kathleen died March 20 at St. Clare Hospital in Fenton. She was 71 years old and a Sister of St. Joseph of Carondelet for 49 years.
Born on July 22, 1950, in Des Moines, Iowa, to Joseph Patrick and Sadie (Klein) Dowling, Sister Mary Kathleen entered the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet in 1972 and was received into the novitiate in 1973. She earned a bachelor’s degree in elementary education from Avila College in 1972 and a master’s as a reading specialist from Clarke College in Dubuque, Iowa, in 1983.
Sister Mary Kathleen ministered in education. She began teaching at St. Francis de Sales School in Denver, Colorado, in 1972. The following two years she was a student in St. Louis at the St. Joseph Novitiate. From February to July 1975, she taught at Holy Name Grade School in St. Louis. Moving to Marquette, Michigan, in 1975, she taught at St. Michael School until 1980, then at Bishop Baraga Central School for four years.
Moving to Chicago in 1984, Sister Mary Kathleen taught one year at Nativity of Our Lord School. She then continued teaching at St. Fidelis School (1985-90), St. Philomena School (1990-2005), and St. Helen School (2005-21). Sister Mary Kathleen retired in 2021 and moved to St. Louis in January 2022.
Survivors include two sisters, Janet Ehlinger and Jean Dols of Houston, Texas. Burial was in Resurrection Cemetery.