S. Rose Therese Wich
S. Rose Therese Wich died Jan. 14, 2020, at the age of 93 in Mother Margaret Hall. S. Rose Therese was born Rose Marie Wich on Aug. 26, 1926, to John Paul and Amelia (Foertsch) Wich in Chicago, Illinois. She was the youngest of three children. She was a Sister of Charity for 75 years.
Rose Therese grew up in Denver, Colorado, having moved there due to her father’s work. She attended Blessed Sacrament grade school and graduated from Cathedral High School in 1944 where she was taught by the Sisters of Charity. S. Rose Therese entered the Sisters of Charity the following September 1944. It was through her relationship with her high school journalism teacher, S. Therese Martin McCarthy, that she felt drawn to religious life and to the Sisters of Charity.
Rose Therese earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in English from the College of Mount St. Joseph, Cincinnati, Ohio, in 1956 and a Master of Education from Creighton University, Omaha, Nebraska, in 1962.
Rose Therese’s ministries cover more than 65 years; 59 being in education as teacher, counselor, principal and administrator. S. Rose Therese taught at Holy Trinity, Trinidad, Colorado, beginning in 1946; remaining in the West she went to St. Mary, Albuquerque, New Mexico, in 1952 and then to St. Joseph, Springfield, Ohio, in 1955. S. Rose Therese moved to teaching high school English at Seton High School, Pueblo, Colorado, in 1956 where she remained until 1959 when she became an English teacher at her former high school, Cathedral, Denver; she would be back there from 1967-’69. In between she taught English at Catholic Central High School, Springfield, Ohio, 1966-’67. In 1969 S. Rose Therese changed to elementary administration at St. Mary, Albuquerque, New Mexico, serving in that capacity until 1979. Next she taught English at St. Pius X High School, Albuquerque, followed by three years at Trinidad Catholic High School as administrator (1980-’83). The remainder of her years in ministry would be lived out in New Mexico as administrator of St. Mary Jr. High (1983-’84); St. Joseph Rio Grande, administrator (1984-’88); St. Pius X High, counselor and English teacher (1988-’89); and Our Lady of Annunciation, elementary principal (1989-2005).
In retirement, at the age of 80, S. Rose Therese continued her service, now as the senior transportation coordinator at the Center for Community Involvement in the Archdiocese of Santa Fe, New Mexico. There she coordinated rides for seniors who were homebound. In 2012 Sister Rose Therese was a finalist for the Volunteer of the Year for Catholic Charities USA. In her nomination the Catholic Charities personnel stated, “S. Rose is known for the loving manner in which she treats those around her. She is the consummate professional, responding to the seniors’ requests with patience and respect and always ending each conversation with a blessing. She enhances and enriches the lives of seniors on a daily basis.”