Koeltztown native Sister Marie Edith Juergensmeyer, 90, of the School Sisters of Notre Dame, who taught and served for many years in the Jefferson City diocese, died peacefully on Jan. 12 in St. Louis.
The Mass of Christian Burial was to be celebrated on Jan. 21 in St. Louis.
Sr. Edith was born May 8, 1931, in Koeltztown, a daughter at Conrad and Louise (Schaefer) Juergensmeyer.
She professed her first vows as a member of the School Sisters of Notre Dame in St. Louis in 1952 and went on to earn her bachelor’s degree in education in 1957 from the former Notre Dame College in St. Louis.
She later earned a master’s degree in elementary education from Southern Illinois University in Edwardsville.
She was dearly loved by all the communities in which she lived and served through teaching and ministry. She taught elementary school at Sacred Heart School in Morrilton, Arkansas; St Mary School in Fort Madison, Iowa; St. Paul School in Highland, Illinois; St. Peter Interparish School in Jefferson City; Immaculate Conception School in Loose Creek; and Sacred Heart School in Rich Fountain.
In the 1960s, she spent several years serving the community of retired SSNDs at Villa Gesu in St. Louis.
She later ministered at St. Michael Parish in Russellville and the Rape and Abuse Crisis Center in Jefferson City and served through pastoral ministry at Sacred Heart in Rich Fountain.
She then devoted the next 18 years to serving the families of St. Peter Parish in Jefferson City, also in pastoral ministry. She then returned to Immaculate Conception Parish in Loose Creek, where she was engaged in volunteer services until 2015.
She spent the remainder of her life at Veronica House and later at Anna House at the Sarah Community for retired sisters in St. Louis.
She will be remembered fondly by all those whose lives she touched through her kindness, teaching and ministry. She was an avid crafter and spent many hours crocheting and sewing, making lovely homemade gifts for family and friends, as wells as items she donated to the poor or to craft sales to raise funds for ministry to people who are less fortunate.
She had a beautiful singing voice that she shared on many occasions and taught to her elementary students.
At her 60-year jubilee in 2012, Sr. Edith gratefully reflected on God calling her to religious life and the opportunity to share faith with children and adults.
“We can spend eternity reviewing how our many prayers were answered,” she said. “And the most important answer is God’s call in our hearts. We can only hear that voice in prayer.”
News of her passing brought a strong reaction on social media.
“She was a wonderful lady who served her God and communities so well,” wrote Joyce Neuner.
“I loved her! She was a kind soul,” wrote Jackie Russler.
“She served God and our local communities very well!” wrote Marlene Stiefermann.
“She was a wonderful person and a great teacher,” wrote Lea Ann Porting Laughlin.
“She lived a great legacy of spreading the Gospel!” wrote Betty Kever.
“An inspiring lady and her commitment to God speaks volumes,” wrote Bonnie Higdon.
“A most dear person who touched many lives,” wrote Doris Neier.
“A beautiful soul that made this world a better place,” wrote Jessie Stuckenschneider.
“Her smile was the window to her soul,” wrote Donna Worland Purvis.
Preceding her in death were her parents; two brothers, Felix and Norbert and Juergensmeyer; a sister, Florence (Juergensmeyer) Kellenberger; and an infant brother.
Surviving are two sisters-in-law, Genevieve Juergensmeyer and Dorothy Juergensmeyer, and numerous nieces, nephews, great-nieces and great-nephews.