Clara Rasch History

(Information on this page was last updated on March 14, 1996)

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 1.1.5 Clara Rasch (picture) ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Birth Date: April 22, 1861 Birth Place: Center Line, Michigan Religion: R. Catholic aka: Sr. Clarissa Occupation: Sister Of Notre Dame Death Date: August 12, 1904 Death Place: St. Louis, Missouri Burial Place: Notre Dame Motherhouse Cemetary, St. Louis, Missouri Father: Florian Rasch II (1819-1891) Mother: Caroline Nickel (1827-1880)
Notes: Twin sister of Julius. Moved with family from Michigan to Alabama in Spring, 1873, at age of 12. The following is from the Archives of the School Sisters of Notre Dame Motherhouse:
Sister Mary Clarissa was born on April 22, 1861, in Detroit, Michigan. Later the family moved to the south. The young woman left her parents' home in Alabama at the age of 16 and entered as a candidate in the Milwaukee Motherhouse. In 1879 she was sent to Milwaukee to teach, and in 1880 she went to Manitowoc, Wisconsin. Sister Clarissa received the holy habit on September 29, 1881, and went to Canada as a novice. During the journey, she was thoroughly chilled because a window had been lift open during the night. This was the original cause of her throat trouble which, in later years, ended in death. The dear sister made her first profession on August 19, 1883, and then immediately came to St. Louis, where she worked at St. Liborius Parish as teach of the third and fourth grade boys for 15 years. Her firm character and tactful manner qualified her especially for this class. She fulfilled her school duties faithfully and conscientiously and could be depended on in any situation. What was entrusted to her was taken care of. In addition to her work in school, the capable sister was also entrusted with sacristy duties. Undismayed, she also took over this work, even though it was sometimes too much for her limited strength. No word of complaint came from her lips, even though it was evident she was completely exhausted. The sacristy was always in perfect order. She kept the vestments and choir boys' cassocks in good condition. Decorating the alter was her special concern and she was never tired when the alter needed to be trimmed. The good sister made her perpetual profession in the Milwaukee Mother house on August 22, 1895. She worked a few years in Jefferson City, where her health gradually failed. After her retreat in the motherhouse in August, 1903, she felt very ill and was not assigned to a new school. It was hoped that with the care of a skillful doctor the dear sister would again recover. But her chronic throat trouble had spread through her windpipe and into her lungs so that there was no more thought of recovery. The Last Sacraments were administered. On August 8 she had a severe hemorrhage, but recovered again. On August 12, the feast of St. Clara, her patron, she was especially cheerful and very happy with her companion sisters' nameday wishes and holy pictures. A letter from her dear brother, Father Lucas, OFM, Cap., gave her special joy. That afternoon the patient suffered another hemorrhage and the priest was quickly summoned. He said the liturgical prayers for the dying, and when he noticed that Sister Clarissa was a little better, hastened to get Holy Communion from the chapel. It was touching to see the dying Sister's devotion when receiving her last Holy Communion. After a short thanksgiving, her soul passed quietly to a better place where everlasting blessings in reward of her life's endeavor awaited her.
She is buried in Notre Dame Motherhouse cemetery, Right Row 4, Grave #31, St. Louis.
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