S. Ann Fasbender OSB, 86, died on Thursday, December 15, 2016. A wake service will be held at 7:00 PM on Sunday, December 18, 2016 and the Funeral Mass will be celebrated at 10:30 AM on Monday, December 19, 2016, both in Bishop Marty Memorial Chapel in Yankton, South Dakota. Burial will be in the monastery cemetery. Arrangements are under the direction of the Wintz & Ray Funeral Home and Cremation Service in Yankton.
Gertrude Ann was born November 6, 1930 at Hendricks, Minnesota to Ben and Florence (Davis) Fasbender. She was the third of five children. She attended country school near their farm at White, South Dakota for eight years, and attended Good Counsel Academy, Mankato, Minnesota and Mount Marty High School, Yankton, South Dakota. In 1966, she graduated from Mount Marty College, Yankton, South Dakota and earned a Masters from the University of South Dakota, Vermillion, South Dakota in 1969. In 1973, she studied in the Religious Education Graduate Program at Mundelein College in Chicago, Illinois.
Ann entered Sacred Heart Monastery August 1948 and became a novice June 23, 1949. She made first vows on June 24, 1950 and on June 29, 1953 she made her final profession to monastic life.
S. Ann began her elementary education ministry at Sacred Heart School, Yankton, South Dakota in 1950. She also taught at Ipswich, Aberdeen, and Sioux Falls, South Dakota. While in Vermillion, South Dakota, she was the principal as well as a teacher. In 1974, she became the supervisor of the Mount Marty College Day Care Center and she continued this work until May 1995. Her next eight years were spent in ministry to the Native Americans in Yankton, South Dakota and in 2002 and subsequent years she was a pastoral minister in Trenton, North Dakota and McLaughlin, South Dakota.
S. Ann met life with her dry sense of humor and she appreciated the simple things of life. She found God's beauty in the children she taught and cared for, and enjoyed sharing the wisdom that comes naturally from the mouths of pre-school children. She enjoyed traveling and camping under the stars with her sisters and baking bread when time permitted.
S. Ann is survived by her Benedictine community, her sister Veronica Reilly, her nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her parents, and her sisters, S. Bennett, OSB and S. Veronica, OSB; and her brother James.
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As one of her students, I came to appreciate what I learned from this educator. She was a highly capable teacher as well as a messenger of God. Not the loudest voice in a room but maybe the most wise. Fortunate for me, I got to know her as an adult. My wife taught on the same faculty with her and we reconnected. What a blessing. May she rest in peace.
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