By Sister Mary Thill, OSF
Sister M. Gervase Lochotzki died peacefully at Rosary Care Center in Sylvania, Ohio on October 15, 2023. The daughter of Urban and Gervase Lochotzki came to Sylvania from Immaculate Conception Parish in Port Clinton, Ohio in 1949 to become a Sister of St. Francis. She felt called to become a missionary and though the Sylvania Franciscans were not a missionary Order she joined them because she knew them best as her teachers. She professed her first vows in 1953 and spent the first 30 years in religious life teaching in elementary schools in Michigan, Minnesota and Ohio where she taught every grade and just about every subject. In those days there were even half day sessions and double grade classrooms that proved a challenge to the best of teachers and she was one of the best.
During her 70 years in religious life, Sister Gervase spent those years in ministry not only teaching youngsters, she spent another 30 years working with adults in adult literacy programs, GED preparation, and tutoring in a variety of settings. She helped establish eight learning centers as part of the Christian Appalachian Project in Martin, Kentucky. She was especially passionate about teaching adults how to teach other adults how to read and learn. She worked with the WIN Center students at Lourdes College, and helped prepare women at Bethany House in Toledo for their GED test. Her final ministry was one of Prayer Ministry at Rosary Care Center.
Sister Gervase had many interests and projects on the go in her later years. She liked to make mandalas, write poetry, and was working on her autobiography. While living in Kentucky, she carved a dulcimer out of walnut wood and her goal was to become an accomplished dulcimer and piano player.
She lived life in tune with her favorite saying, Where your heart is there is your treasure. She shared joy, love and compassion with all whom she met and was always grateful for her life as a religious woman.
Sister Gervase is survived by her brothers Bernard and Tony Lochotzki, sisters Dolores Payne (Ronald Payne) and Rose Mary Rose, more than 20 nieces and nephews, and dear friends Al and Patricia Gajewski. Sister Gervase will be greatly missed by her Sisters in Community, her caregivers at Rosary Care Center, her family and friends. A Welcoming Service for Sister will take place at 6:00 p.m. on Thursday, October 19, 2023 in Our Lady Queen of Peace Chapel on the Convent grounds. The funeral Mass will be at 10:30 a.m. on Friday, October 20, 2023 in the Chapel. (Live streaming of the Mass can be found https://video.ibm.com/channel/RvdadQRjbGk). Memorial contributions may be made to the Sisters of St. Francis, Sylvania, Ohio.
Arrangements made by Thomas I. Wisniewski Funeral Home, Toledo, Ohio.