CLYDE, Mo. — Sister Mary Pauline Kramek, OSB passed away on Nov. 20, 2012.
Angeline Therese Kramek was born on March 20, 1921, to Felix and Catherine Kuziola Kramek in Hamtramck, Mich., and baptized a week later in St. Florian Church in Hamtramck.
Angeline had three older brothers and one younger brother. When she was eight, the family moved from Hamtramck to Detroit, where she went to school.
One day Angeline, who had always wanted to be a religious sister and considered joining the Notre Dame Sisters who taught her in school, found a copy of the BSPA’s magazine, “Tabernacle and Purgatory,” in the back of church and read it from beginning to end. When she saw a picture of four postulants kneeling in prayer before the Blessed Sacrament in the Benedictine Sisters’ Adoration Chapel at Clyde, Mo., she decided that was where she wanted to go.
Her mother told her she was too young to go so far, and her father asked, “Where in the world is Clyde, Missouri?” Her brother got a map and drew a line from Detroit to Clyde, and her father said “we can try it.” In 1935 they traveled for three or four weeks to Clyde, stopping along the way.
Before making that trip with her parents, Angeline had already made up her mind and planned to stay at Clyde. She and another young Academy girl then had to go to nearby Conception Abbey for four years to continue their studies for a high school diploma. The first two years they were aspirants, not yet postulants.
Angeline became a postulant on Aug. 3, 1937, and was invested as a novice on April 30, 1938. On the day of her first Profession of Vows on Aug. 26, 1939, she became Sister Mary Pauline and made her Perpetual Vows on Aug. 26, 1944. She lived in the monasteries located in Clyde, Mundelein, Ill., Kansas City, Mo., San Diego, Tucson, Ariz., and Our Lady of Rickenbach, the Sisters’ healthcare facility.
For her, every place was a “blessing.” After one day in kitchen as a new postulant, it became obvious that her talent was elsewhere and was invited to help in the sewing room. She loved sewing, and being in the Church Work Department at Clyde, and later in San Diego, proved to be her talent and her special joy. Sister Mary Pauline also served as portress and as the sacristan in all the Congregation’s monasteries.
Her pleasant disposition and ever-grateful spirit never left her, even when she was in much pain, and her youthful enthusiasm and simplicity of heart did not diminish with age. Her conversation in her last days was not about pain, but about her heart-felt appreciation for the loving care and goodness she was experiencing.
To donate a memorial in Sister Mary Pauline’s honor, please visit the BSPA planned giving site at www.BenedictineSisters.org or mail it to Benedictine Sisters, 31970 State Highway P, Clyde, MO, 64432.