Sister Kathleen Marie (Marie Kathleen) Saffa, age 86 died at Villa St. Michael in Emmitsburg, Maryland on March 6, 2023. She was born April 17, 1936 in Baltimore, Maryland to Lillian Tharsella (Hladky) and John Joseph Saffa. Before entering the Daughters of Charity, Sister Kathleen Marie was a member of St. Dominic Parish in Baltimore. After two years at Seton High School in Baltimore, Sister Kathleen Marie left to help her family. She entered the Community in Emmitsburg on January 26, 1955 and completed her education from St. Joseph High School in Emmitsburg. She earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in Elementary Education in 1967 from St. Joseph College in Emmitsburg. In 1980 she earned a Master of Arts degree in Religious Studies, majoring in Sacred Scripture from the St. Charles Borromeo Seminary-Overbrook in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
After a period of initial formation, Sister Kathleen Marie was missioned to teach at Sacred Heart School in Norfolk, Virginia (1956-1965) and Our Lady of Peace School in Canton, Ohio (1965-1966). She then studied at St. Joseph College in Emmitsburg (1966-1967). After getting her degree, she taught at St. Catherine Labouré School in Wheaton, Maryland (1967-1969) and St. Joseph School in Petersburg, Virginia (1969-1970). The next year she served in Formation at St. Joseph Provincial House (1970-1971) and then resumed teaching first at St. Mary’s School in Rome, Georgia (1971-1978) and then at St. Dominic School in Baltimore (1978-1984). The next missions were as Pastoral Care Director in Sacred Heart Hospital in Cumberland, Maryland (1984-1986) and St. Catherine Labouré Manor in Jacksonville, Florida (1986-1993). After a renewal program, she continued as Pastoral Care Director at St. Elizabeth Home for Nursing Care in Baltimore (1995-1999). Following this, Sister Kathleen Marie assumed the duty of Pastoral Care Coordinator at St. Vincent de Paul Nursing Center in Frostburg, Maryland (1999-2005). She served as Assistant to the Sister Servant in Villa St. Michael in Emmitsburg (2005-2008) and then worked in Pastoral Care at Carroll Manor Nursing & Rehabilitation Center in Washington, DC (2008-2014).
Although Sister Kathleen Marie loved her many years of teaching, she found special joy in her Pastoral Care ministry as chaplain, sharing Scripture and spirituality with those who were sick and elderly. In 2014 Sister Kathleen Marie was missioned to Villa St. Michael in Emmitsburg where she served in the Ministry of Prayer until her death.
Sister Kathleen Marie was preceded in death by her parents, brothers, Alvin Saffa and Joseph Saffa, and sister, Lillian Brower. She is survived by nieces, nephews and her sisters in Community.
A Wake service was held on Wednesday, March 8 in the Villa Chapel in Emmitsburg. The Mass of Christian Burial took place on Thursday, March 9 in the Villa Chapel, followed by burial in the Sacred Heart Cemetery.