Sister M. Eucharista Ward died at Rosary Care Center in Sylvania, Ohio, on January 5, 2019. The daughter of Leighton and Margaret Mary Ward came to the convent from Immaculate Conception Parish, Columbia Heights, Minnesota in 1958. She made her first profession of religious vows in 1961 and her final vows in 1966.
Sister Eucharista spent more than 57 years in ministry to the People of God as an educator, a home health aide and a writer. She obtained a B.A. degree from St. Catherine College in Minneapolis, Minnesota before entering the convent. She earned a M.A. degree in English from Xavier University in Cincinnati, Ohio in 1969. For a few years, Sister taught in elementary schools in Ohio and Michigan and for 23 years taught in secondary schools in Minnesota, Ohio and Michigan. While in Formation, she taught at St. Clare Academy and Lourdes Junior College in Sylvania. She also taught at the college during summer sessions and evening classes.
While at Cardinal Stritch High School in Oregon, Ohio, Sister taught junior and senior English, chaired the English Department, chaired the school’s first North Central self-study and directed the chess club. She was known for her creativity as an English teacher and she herself was a voracious reader of such works as the Doctors of the Church, (especially St. Catherine of Siena). She also appreciated classical music. A special gift that she shared came alive when assisting our Sisters and others in writing first drafts of résumés and master’s theses. She polished every document making them and their writers shine. Sister was always ready with a helping hand and pitched in on every activity of her local Stritch community. In her later years, she wrote fiction including several short novels and her sequel to Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice was published and very well received by her readers.
When Sister Eucharista completed her teaching ministry she turned to assisting the elderly as a home health aide at Catholic Eldercare, Inc. in Minneapolis, Minnesota as well as serving in that capacity for her Sisters at the Motherhouse in Sylvania. Her final days were spent in prayer ministry at Rosary Care Center. Those who knew her best found her to be easy to live with, someone who preferred to walk everywhere she could and always ready to help-out in difficult situations.
Sister Eucharista is survived by her brother Paul (Phalla) Ward and several nieces and nephews. She will be missed by her Sisters in Community, the caring staff at Rosary Care Center, her family and friends, her dear friend Mary Downey, and especially Sister Jane Mary and Sister Aloise who devotedly accompanied her in her last months and days.