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Sister Mary M. (Bertille) O’Connor, BVM

Sister Mary M. (Bertille) O’Connor, BVM, 92, of Mount Carmel Bluffs, 1160 Carmel Drive, Dubuque, Iowa, died Sunday, Oct. 8, 2023.

Visitation will be from 9-9:30 a.m. on Thursday, Oct. 12, 2023, in the Mary Frances Clarke Chapel at Mount Carmel Bluffs. Sharing of Memories will be at 9:30 a.m., followed immediately by the Mass of Christian Burial. Burial is in the Mount Carmel Cemetery.

Sister Mary was an elementary teacher and religious education coordinator at St. Patrick in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. She taught in Chicago; Seattle; Kauai, Hawaii; and East Moline, Ill., where she also served as pastoral minister and director of religious education.

She was born on July 30, 1931, in Des Moines, Iowa, to William and Bertille (Broderick) O’Connor. She entered the BVM congregation on Sept. 8, 1950, from St. Paul the Apostle Parish, Davenport, Iowa. She professed first vows on March 19, 1953, and final vows on July 16, 1958.

“[Mary’s] life focus was on spirituality and religious education. With gratitude to the congregation for nurturing both, she wrote, ‘We have a variety of gifts, [and] our BVM community allows us the inner freedom to use these gifts. . . The Sisters who have gone before us have given us a great gift of faith which continues to bear the fruit of many blessings.’” (Eulogy).

She was preceded in death by her parents and siblings Edward (Dorothy) O’Connor, James (Eleanor) O’Connor, and Catherine (Thomas) Glancy. She is survived by nieces, nephews, and the Sisters of Charity, BVM, with whom she shared life for 72 years.

Memorials may be given to Sisters of Charity, BVM, 1100 Carmel Drive, Dubuque, IA 52003 or make an online gift.

Watch Memorial Mass and Sharing of Memories

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This Post Has 2 Comments
  1. Dear Sister Mary O’Connor,
    I wish we had a chance to speak in person. You were one of my favorite teachers at Saint Catherine’s School in Kapaa, Hawaii. I love you and may your soul be in Heaven singing with the Angel Choirs!
    Aloha ke Akua,
    Bea Lemke(Newman)
    Kapaa, Kauai, Hawaii USA

  2. Sister Mary Bertille was our 6th grade teacher on the island of Kauai. She related a story to me that she learned to drive on Kauai as the population back then was only about 25,000. She told me that Sister Dolores (Sarah James) was her passenger and exclaimed, “Mary you are driving to slow that I can count the number of coconuts on that tree!” Sister Dolores taught us in the 5th grade. May they both rest in peace.

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