Kathleen Creedon, CSJ

We remember her in the blueness of the skies and in the warmth of summer
August 31, 1921 – August 9, 2018

 “To pay attention that is our endless and proper work.”

 Shortly before Karen, Sister Kathleen’s niece, called to tell me that Sister Kathleen had passed away, I had seen this quote by Mary Oliver on Facebook. After we hung-up I sat reflecting on my friendship with Sister Kathleen and these words came back to me “To pay attention that is our endless and proper work.” To me Sister Kathleen lived these words.

 It was Sister Kathleen’s way to pay attention, she paid careful attention to every aspect of her life to words – in her love of reading and writing poetry, to music, to nature – in her to her lifelong love of horses and in her love of flowers which she carefully pressed and made into cards that brought pleasure to so many, to her postage stamp collection. Sister Kathleen did not just put stamps in books; she carefully recorded by hand the history of each stamp. In this way she gave greater meaning to the picture on the stamps – helping others to learn from them.

The attention she gave to her family in so many ways – most of which I did not personally see but I did see it in the loving care she gave to her sister Madeline, in the nature books that she put together for the small children in the family and in the gifts she thoughtfully collected for her family each year at the Bethany bazaar. I saw it in how she would share with me her pride in their accomplishments and in her concern if someone was ill or was working too hard.

 Sister Kathleen paid great attention to the people around her at Bethany; she visited residents at Bethany if they were sick, or recovering from illness or if she thought they might be lonely – she would pray with them, talk with them, she would not stay for long – just make a friendly visit.

 If Sister Kathleen saw someone who was having a hard time settling in at Bethany she would do what she could to help them whether it was encouraging them to join her at Bingo or to attend other activities. She would often stop by their room and pick them up before an event to be sure they would feel personally welcomed and invited. She would offer to share her card making with them or her rug making but above all she would offer them her welcoming kindness.

 Sister Kathleen did not want anyone to feel alone, left out or uncomfortable. She would sometime say to me “Have you seen so and so today? I think she is a bit down – be sure you stop by and say hello”.

Sister Kathleen was fiercely committed to ensuring that people felt welcomed and appreciated. She was concerned with justice – with fair and equal treatment for each individual.

 Everything that Sister Kathleen did was done with attentive, deep concern and awareness – with honesty. Sister Kathleen did not dissemble. You knew what she thought was right and what she thought was not right.

 Her attentive concern for others did not fade as her eyesight and health failed. While she was able physically to do less and less, her heart was nonetheless attentive and caring.

 Sister Kathleen and I were friends for over 15 years; we met at Bethany when I worked in the Activity Department. It was an honor and pleasure to know her – to be counted among her friends.

When I think of Sister Kathleen, as I know I often will – I will think of the intensity of her caring soul, her kindness to and her concern for the people around her, her acceptance of people where they are and her quite faith.

 Sister Kathleen did not really ask anything of anyone except that they be patient, kind and caring to others and to themselves.

 I will also remember the intense delight that she took in the many things that engaged her interests. I will remember her sense of humor that gave rise to the tilt of her head, to the twinkle in her eye and to her soft chuckle.

 Thank you Sister Kathleen for your friendship, God Bless you.

Given by: Suzanne Bradford  16 August 16, 2018