Sister Karen (Karen Helen) Flaherty died on January 7, 2023 at Seton Residence in Evansville, Indiana. Sister was born in St Edward, Nebraska on November 19, 1938 and was one of five children of Leo Eugene and Helen (Van Ackeren) Flaherty. She graduated from Cathedral High School in Lincoln, Nebraska in 1955 and entered the Daughters of Charity in St. Louis, Missouri in 1958.
After initial formation, Sister Karen was sent to St. Joseph High School in New Orleans, Louisiana where she served as a counselor, teacher and assistant principal (1961-1972).Sister received a BA in history from Marillac College in St. Louis, Missouri (1961), an MA in Guidance and Counseling from Xavier University in New Orleans Louisiana (1968), and in Historical Theology from Saint Louis University in St. Louis, Missouri (1974) and an Honorary Doctorate in Humane Services from Our Lady of the Holy Cross College in New Orleans, Louisiana (2001). Sister Karen also served as Vocation Director for the Daughters’ West Central Province (1972-1978), a teacher and counselor at St. Vincent High School in Perryville, Missouri (1978-1983), a Co-Director of Learning Clubs in Sallisaw, Oklahoma (1983-1988), a member of the Pastoral Ministry Team in Prescott, Arkansas (1988-1989), a Guidance Counselor at Reicher Catholic High School (1989-1991), Executive Director of Learning Clubs and the William Cobb Education Club all in Waco, Texas (1989-1994), Coordinator of Outreach Endeavors at St. Anthony Hospital in Amarillo, Texas (1994-1996), Coordinator of Vincentian Ministries in New Orleans, Louisiana (1996-2002), Parish Worker at LCWR V Project in Lake Providence, Louisiana (2002-2009), Family Literacy Coordinator at Rendu Services in Dunbar, Pennsylvania (2009-2011) and as a missionary at Christ the King Parish and St. Kizitos Parish in Kitale, Kenya, East Africa (2011-2017). Sister Karen also volunteered at St. Vincent de Paul Food Pantry in Evansville, Indiana (2017-2020), before coming to Seton Residence to serve in the Ministry of Prayer.
A Wake Service was held on Thursday, January 12, 2023 in Seton Residence Chapel followed by the Mass of Christian Burial with burial in St. Joseph Cemetery. Sister was preceded in death by her parents, her brother Gerald and her sisters Joanne Suter, Mary Louise Johnston and Kathleen Brown. She is survived by nieces and nephews, her Sisters in community and many friends.