Sister Margaret Kiefer (Sister Mark), 94, a Franciscan Sister of the Congregation of Our Lady of Lourdes, Rochester, died at Assisi Heights on Wednesday, Dec. 5, 2018.
Margaret Ellen Kiefer was born Sept. 29, 1924, in Elwood, Ind., to John and Sarah (Russell) Kiefer. She entered the Sisters of St. Francis in 1947 from St. Joseph Parish, Elwood. Sister Marg made first vows in 1949 and perpetual vows in 1952. She received a bachelor’s degree from the College of St. Teresa, Winona in 1946 and a master’s degree from St. Mary’s University, Winona, in 1960.
For 22 years, Sister Marg taught secondary education at several Catholic schools in southern Minnesota: St. John, Caledonia; St. Mary, Sleepy Eye; MacGill Institute, Lake City; Sacred Heart, Waseca; and Cotter High School, Winona. She also was a secondary education teacher at Notre Dame High School, Portsmouth, Ohio, and Sacred Heart High School, Norfolk, Neb.
Following her years of teaching, Sister Marg served in pastoral ministry in various locations: Hartford City, Ind.; Catholic Worker Farm in New York; Alabama Prison Project, Montgomery; Catholic Worker House in Colorado Springs, Colo.; and also in a soup kitchen and hospitality House in Colorado Springs. Sister Marg found her deeper calling in missionary ministry to the poor of other cultures: San Miguel, Estanquelas, El Salvador, from 1988 to 1992; Santo Domingo and San Miguel, Peru, from 1988 to 1992; Sondor Huancabamba, Chulucanas, Peru, from 1996 to 1999; and Colegio Anexo San Francisco de Asis, Bogota, Colombia, from 2000 to 2015. She retired to Assisi Heights in 2015 and continued to serve the homeless as she was able at the Dorothy Day House. She enjoyed meeting people and participated in many activities and programs at Assisi Heights.
Sister Marg is survived by her Franciscan Congregation with whom she shared life for 71 years and several nieces and nephews. Preceding her in death were her parents; brothers, Mark, Jeremiah and Edward Kiefer; and sisters, Gretchen Kiefer and Marqueena Kiefer-Cleaver.
An Evening Prayer Vigil with Sharing of Memories will be at 4 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 12, in the Chapel of Our Lady of Lourdes at Assisi Heights. The Funeral Mass will be 11 a.m. Thursday, Dec. 13, in Lourdes Chapel. Visitation one hour prior. Burial will be at Calvary Cemetery, Rochester.
Memorials are suggested to the Sisters of St. Francis, Office of Mission Advancement, Assisi Heights, 1001 14th St. NW, Suite 100 Rochester, MN 55901.