May They Rest in Peace: Sr. Rose Mary (Rose) Wolak, CSSF

Sr. Rose Mary (Rose) Wolak, CSSF, of Detroit, was called by the Lord to complete her life’s journey on April 21, 2020, in Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary Convent, Livonia. Sister was 86 years old and 64 years in religious life.

Rose was born on Aug. 9, 1933, and baptized at Corpus Christi Church on Nov. 5. She was the fourth (a twin) of five children of Leon and Anastasia (Kempa): Roman, Irene+, Leo+, Rose (Sister Rose Mary) and her twin, Alice Turkawski. 

A celebration of Sr. Rose Mary’s life will be held at a future date at the Felician Sisters’ convent located at 36800 Schoolcraft Road, Livonia. 
Sr. Rose Mary (Rose) Wolak, CSSF

She attended Corpus Christi Grade School and St. Stanislaus High School, both in Detroit, graduating in 1951. Rose was accepted as a postulant on Aug. 21, 1955, and the following year when she was invested with the religious habit, she received the religious name of Sr. Mary Felix, later changed to Sr. Rose Mary. Final vows were pronounced in August 1963. 

Sr. Rose Mary earned a bachelor’s degree at Madonna (College) University where she majored in English and journalism. Additional classes in journalism followed at Marquette University. She also completed the requirements for permanent secondary teaching certification.  

Sr. Rose Mary began her teaching ministry at St. Michael School in Livonia in the fourth grade, then taught at St. Stanislaus and St. Andrew High Schools in Detroit. She was responsible for several yearbooks when she was assigned to Ladywood High School in Livonia. Sister also taught at Catholic Central, Manistee, and Nativity Diocesan High in Detroit. 

Assigned to the Felician Generalate in Rome twice, from 1989 to 1993, and 1999 to 2003, for a total of eight years, Sr. Rose Mary worked as secretary in the English Section of the Vatican Secretariat of State.

From 1994 to 1999, Sister was assigned to Madonna University as assistant to the registrar and as archives assistant. Following the completion of active ministry in the teaching ministry in 2006, Sister was clerical assistant to the local communicator and an aide in the finance office. 

Sr. Rose Mary’s health declined over the years and gradually required total care. Placed in hospice care, her life ebbed away and on April 21, 2020, she was embraced by the Lord and journeyed to His heavenly kingdom. 

Sr. Rose Mary is survived by a brother, Roman, and her twin, Alice Turkawski.

Burial was in Holy Sepulchre Cemetery, Southfield, on April 24, 2020.

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