Longtime music educator Sister Venard Venus dies at age 99

Sister Venard Venus died Aug, 26, 2009, at Nazareth Motherhouse in Concordia. She was 99 years old and a Sister of St. Joseph for 78 years. She was born in Gorham, Kan., on Feb. 13, 1910, to John and Johanna Donovan Venus, the third of four children, and was baptized Mabel Cecelia. She entered the Sisters of St. Joseph in Concordia on Sept. 7, 1930.

On March 19, 1931, Mabel received the habit of the Sisters of St. Joseph and was given the name Sister Venard. She pronounced first vows on March 20, 1933, and final vows on August 15, 1936.

Sister Venard received a bachelor’s degree in music education from Marymount College in Salina in 1940. In 1954 she received a master’s degree in music education from Chicago Music College. She taught in schools staffed by the Sisters of St. Joseph in the Kansas cities of Herndon, Salina, Damar, Leoville, Beloit, Park, Junction City, Tipton and Oakley; and in Chicago; St. George, Ill.; Grand Island, Neb.; and Lake Linden, Mich. In 1991, Sister Venard retired to Medaille Center in Salina and moved to Nazareth Motherhouse in 2001.

Sister Venard was preceded in death by her parents, two brothers and one sister. A Bible Vigil Service will be held Thursday, Aug. 27, at 7 p.m. in the Nazareth Motherhouse Chapel with Sister Mary Jo Thummel as the eulogist. The Mass of Christian Burial will be Friday, Aug. 28, at 3 p.m. in the Sacred Heart Chapel at the Motherhouse, with Father Jack Schlaf presiding. The burial will be in the Nazareth Motherhouse Cemetery. Chaput-Buoy Mortuary, 325 W. 6th St., Concordia, is in charge of arrangements.

Memorials for Sister Venard may be given to the Sisters of St. Joseph Health Care/Retirement Fund or the Apostolic Works of the Sisters; P.O Box 279, Concordia KS 66901.

One thought on “Longtime music educator Sister Venard Venus dies at age 99

  • August 28, 2009 at 4:45 pm

    Sister V was very dear to me…she was definitely a favorite cousin. Her passing is the last of the close relatives on my dad’s side of the family (dad was Vic Lewis). I was so fortunate to know and love her, and to be a recipient of her love. In my view, she was truly one of the shining stars of the Sisters of St. Joseph and was highly respected by her former students. She deserves to be in the arms of Jesus and will be greatly missed.

    I am unable to attend the services for her as I’m currently away from home. I regret that I’m unable to participate in the farewell services for her. On the humorous side, I need to say that I’m in Las Vegas and on the day of her death I did some gambling for her as I know how much she enjoyed that recreation. I had the good fortune of a small win; the proceeds will be sent as part of a memorial to her. Somehow or the other, I feel that she was pulling the handle on that slot machine and had a big smile on her face.

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