sister edith vogel csj

(Sister Louis Georgine)

February 15, 1923 - February 6, 2017

A loving, hopeful woman, with a listening ear

“[Edith] was always such a gentle, joyful sister. She had the gift of being truly glad to be in the presence of another.” —Sister Ida Berresheim

On February 15, 1923, Louis and Odeal (Terbrak) Vogel, of St. Louis, Missouri, welcomed their fourth daughter and named her Edith. (Three more daughters completed the family.) Edith was baptized at their parish church, St. Engelbert’s. Her family moved to Nativity Parish where Edith attended elementary school. She graduated from St. Mark High. Edith found work in various occupations.

“I worked for a year babysitting and housework three days a week. From there, I went to DePaul Hospital and worked for a year in the office. I went to Ely Walker Dry Goods Company and worked there five years.”

Finding this work boring, she started thinking about her past. At one time, she’d felt close to Sister Anne Julia Roddy and she wondered where she was. On a whim, Edith called Carondelet to ask about S. Anne and was totally surprised when the switchboard operator said, “She’s right here.” It turned out that S. Anne was visiting Carondelet for the first time in years. Edith felt that God certainly had a hand in that happenstance! 

The friendship was rekindled. Edith entered the Sisters of St. Joseph February 11, 1947. She received the habit and the name Sister Louis Georgine, August 15, 1947. Her bachelor’s degree in elementary education/history was from Fontbonne College (1961). 

I thought of Edith as a lady, one who wore humility and peace in her smile and in the way that she walked—head up, straight shoulders but never haughty … She showed her smile to welcome each person that she met, making each feel as if she were the most important person in the world. What a beautiful quality this is and she owned it.  
Sister Pauline Komrska 

Sister Edith served in elementary education at: St. Viator, Chicago, Illinois (1949); Our Lady of Presentation, Overland, Missouri (1960); St. Margaret of Scotland, St. Louis (1964); and Holy Name, also St. Louis (1971). Next, she ministered at St. Joseph Boy’s Home in various capacities: tutor, secretary, principal and director of education (1974). In 1980, S. Edith became an administrative secretary at Nazareth Convent. 

Sister Connie Gleason recalls, “I stayed at the Ringer Road House a few summers when I worked at Nazareth as a volunteer. Edith was a joy to live with. She even gave me perms and cut my hair. I have warm memories of Edith.”

In 1989, S. Edith became receptionist and secretary for the St. Louis Province Finance Office. Sister Mary Frances Johnson fondly remembers, “Although short of stature, she proved to be a fine bodyguard for me, the treasurer … She could keep all manner of visitors entertained when the staff person to be visited was already engaged with other business.” Her favorite expression was, “Yes.” 

Retiring in 1998, S. Edith continued to volunteer at Carondelet until 2012 when she moved to Nazareth Living Center. 

Edith and I have been friends for a long time … As she diminished these last months, we often had long and different conversations. I would ask her what was new at Nazareth or what was going on in her life. She would tell me how the children were behaving (children she taught years ago) or how she enjoyed a visit with one of her sisters (long gone). I would nod and comment appropriately. Then I told of community news or about my family. She would listen and nod ... What a gift Edith was ... another friend who loved without question or judgment.  —Sister Joan Spalding

Sister Helen Oates

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