"The greater the work the more
important it is to establish it on
a solid foundation. Thus it will
not only be more perfect; it
will also be more lasting.”

St. Louise de Marillac

“Be diligent in serving
the poor. Love the poor,
honor them, my children,
as you would honor
Christ Himself.”

St. Louise de Marillac

 

S. Mary Laura Miceli

Sister Mary Laura Miceli died July 25, 2022 at the age of 95 in Mother Margaret Hall, the nursing facility for the Sisters of Charity, Mount St. Joseph, Ohio. Sister Mary Laura was born on Nov. 11, 1926 to Philip and Concetta (Giardina) in Lorain, Ohio. She was the oldest of three children, two girls and a boy. She was a Sister of Charity for 71 years.

Sister Mary Laura grew up in Lorain and attended public schools. She entered the Sisters of Charity in September 1950 after first meeting the Community on a visit to Emmitsburg, Maryland, the site of the Shrine of St. Elizabeth Ann Seton. Being impressed with the life of Elizabeth and her spirit, Sister Mary Laura said to herself, “I like these Sisters if only they were in Ohio.” A few months later she met a friend who had graduated from the College of Mount St. Joseph, staffed by these same Sisters having Mother Seton as their founder. Sister Mary Laura held a firm belief that God had answered the desire first planted by her mother as she sent her off to school each morning, placing her under the protection of St. Joseph.  

Sister Mary Laura earned a Bachelor of Science degree in education from the College of Mount St. Joseph in 1961 and a Master of Education from Xavier University, Cincinnati, Ohio, in 1972. She received a master’s in pastoral studies from the College of Mount St. Joseph in 1991.   

Sister Mary Laura’s ministries spanned more than 50 years in education and parish ministry, 30 in the classroom and curriculum coordination and 22 in parish and religious education. She began her years of service at Cathedral, Denver, Colorado, teaching primary age children. In 1953 she went to Holy Trinity, Trinidad, Colorado (1953-’56); next to St. Boniface, Cincinnati (1956-’57); St. Lawrence, Cincinnati (1957-’60). At this time she moved to the junior high classroom at Holy Angels, Sidney, Ohio (1960-’66); St. William, Cincinnati (1966-’71); St. Elizabeth, Norwood, Ohio (1971-’73); and St. Albert, Kettering, Ohio (1973-’80).

In 1980 Sister Mary Laura took a break from ministry and participated in the year-long Active Sabbatical Spirituality program at the College of Mount St. Joseph. After completing the program she felt called to put education into action by sharing social justice opportunities with students and adults at Guardian Angels, Cincinnati (1981-’82). She then served four happy years at St. Andrew, Milford, Ohio, as religious education coordinator before administering the religious education program at Our Lady of the Rosary, Greenhills, Ohio (1986-‘2003). When ministering in a parish Sister Mary Laura fully embraced the life of the parish. She served on the parish councils at St. Albert and Our Lady of the Rosary. She was also an active member of the school board at St. Elizabeth and St. Andrew. She particularly valued the contributions of the families in parish life.

Sister Mary Laura retired in 2003 and became a reliable Motherhouse volunteer in Arts and Crafts lending her creative skills with many re-use/second-use items. A highlight for her was a pilgrimage to Italy in 2012 with the members of Our Lady of the Rosary parish.

Reflecting on the congregation of the future, Sister Mary Laura shared, “The Holy Spirit will continue to guide a smaller, but stronger spiritual group of women that will continue to spread ‘the Good News’ while keeping Elizabeth Seton’s charism alive.”

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