May They Rest in Peace: Sr. Mary Catherine Nolan, OP

Sr. Mary Catherine Nolan, OP, formerly known as Sister John David, died on Thursday, October 27, 2022, at the Dominican Life Center in Adrian. She was 89 years of age and in the 70th year of her religious profession in the Adrian Dominican Congregation.

Sister Mary Catherine was born in Chicago, Illinois, to John and Leona (Caron) Nolan. She graduated from Aquinas Dominican High School in Chicago and received a Bachelor of Science degree in Chemistry from Siena Heights College (University) in Adrian; a Master of Science degree in Mathematics from University of Notre Dame in Notre Dame, Indiana; a Master of Arts degree in Theology from University of Detroit (University of Detroit Mercy) in Detroit, Michigan; a Master of Divinity degree in Theology from Sts. Cyril and Methodius Seminary in Orchard Lake, Michigan; and a Doctor of Sacred Theology degree from University of Dayton, in Dayton, Ohio.

Sr. Mary Catherine Nolan, OP
Sr. Mary Catherine Nolan, OP

Sister Mary Catherine spent 18 years ministering in elementary and secondary education in Detroit, Walled Lake, and Midland, Michigan; and at Aquinas High School, Chicago, a Congregation-sponsored institution. She also taught theology for two years at the Global Spirituality Institute, Cincinnati, Ohio, and for one year at St. Mary’s University, San Antonio, Texas.

Additionally, she served for two years in campus ministry at the University of Michigan, Dearborn; for a total of six years in formation work at Duns Scotus Formation Center, Southfield, Michigan, and St. Ann Friary, Cincinnati; three years as Badin Hall rector at the University of Notre Dame; and three years in retreat ministry at the House of Hospitality, Albuquerque, New Mexico. She also served two years as rural life director for the Diocese of New Ulm, Minnesota.

Sister was also the author of the book Mary’s Song, published by Ave Maria Press in 2001, as well as various articles published in the last several years. She became a resident of the Dominican Life Center in Adrian in 2012.

Sister Mary Catherine was preceded in death by her parents and two brothers, John David Nolan, Jr. and James Nolan. She is survived by a sister, Judith Nolan-Casty, a former member of the Adrian Dominicans, of Naperville, Illinois, and a brother, Joseph Nolan of Chicago, Illinois, other loving family and her Adrian Dominican Sisters.

Covid vaccinated persons may attend the Vigil and Funeral in person. All are welcome to participate in Sister’s services via livestream.

Visitation will be held from 6:30-7:00 pm on Thursday, November 3, 2022, in the Gathering Space of St. Catherine Chapel. The Vigil Prayer will be held at 7:00 pm Thursday, November 3, 2022, in St. Catherine Chapel. A Mass of Christian Burial will be offered in St. Catherine Chapel at 10:30 am Friday, November 4, 2022. Prayers of Committal will be held in the Congregation Cemetery. Memorial gifts may be made to Adrian Dominican Sisters, 1257 East Siena Heights Drive, Adrian, MI, 49221.

Funeral arrangements are being handled by Anderson-Marry Funeral Home, Adrian.

Sister ministered in Michigan over 21 years:

  • St. Scholastica, Detroit (1951): Elementary Teacher
  • Our Lady Gate of Heaven, Detroit (1952-53): Elementary Teacher
  • St. William, Walled Lake (1953-59): Elementary Teacher
  • Presentation, Detroit (1959-62): Elementary Teacher
  • St. Theresa High School, Detroit (1962-66): High School Teacher
  • Regina high School, Midland (1966-68): High School Teacher
  • Regina High School, Midland (1969-71): High School Teacher
  • University of Michigan, Dearborn (1971-73): Campus Minister
  • Weber Center, Adrian (1974): Assistant
  • Duns Scotus Formation Center, Southfield (1984-86): Candidate Formation-Instructor-Supervisor

Obituaries for clergy and religious who have lived or served in the Archdiocese of Detroit may be emailed to [email protected]. Obituaries are printed as they are submitted, but may be edited for grammar and style. Detroit Catholic reserves the right to refuse or edit any submissions.


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