Funeral services set for Sister Teresa Rigel

April 6, 2016 by


Sister Teresa Rigel

Sister Teresa Rigel, who just celebrated her 71st anniversary as a Sister of St. Joseph, died unexpectedly this afternoon (Wednesday, April 6) at the Nazareth Motherhouse in Concordia. She was 92.

She was born in Waterville, Kan., on May 5, 1923, to Emil and Anna Sedivy Rigel, the first of four children, and was baptized Gladys Marie. She entered the Sisters of St. Joseph on Sept. 14, 1944. On March 18, 1945, Gladys received the habit of the Sisters of St. Joseph and was given the name Sister Teresa. She pronounced first vows on March 19, 1964, and final vows on March 19, 1949.

She earned her bachelor’s degree in nursing education from Marymount College, Salina, in 1950, followed by a master’s in nursing from Catholic University, Washington, D.C., in 1953 and a master’s in library science from Rosary College, River Forest, Ill., in 1960.

She was a nurse in Sabetha, Kan., from 1946 to 1948, and then added nursing education to her duties during her years at St. John’s Hospital and Marymount College (1953-1968).

In 1968, she began a new ministry, serving until 1974 as librarian at Red Cloud Indian School, on the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota. She returned to Kansas to serve as a librarian at the Salina Public Library from 1974 to 1980, but then went back to the Red Cloud Indian School, again as librarian, from 1980 to 1984.

She came to Concordia in 1991, and spent four years working at various duties for OCCK Inc., and then as a volunteer for hospice and at nursing homes until she retired from active ministry in 2008. Since then she has lived at the Motherhouse in Concordia.

When she celebrated her 70th jubilee last year, she wrote, “A profound experience for me was my years working with the Ogallala Sioux on the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota. … Initially I worked as a librarian at the Red Cloud Indian School so was able to serve the students and faculty there. But I also had a background in nursing so many people came to me for help, and that was a good way to get to know more people. I loved serving where I was needed.”

Sister Teresa was preceded in death by her parents and two sisters. She is survived by one brother, Kenneth Lee Rigel of Las Vegas, Nev.

A Bible Vigil Service will be held Friday, April 8, at 7 p.m. in the Sacred Heart Chapel at the Nazareth Motherhouse with Sister Sylvia Winterscheidt as the eulogist. The Mass of Christian Burial will be Saturday, April 9, at 10:30 a.m. at the Motherhouse with Rev. Jim Hoover presiding. The burial will be in the Nazareth Motherhouse Cemetery.

Nutter Mortuary, 116 E. 6th St., Concordia, KS is in charge of arrangements.
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Memorials for Sister Teresa Rigel 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. To make an online donation in Sister Teresa’s memory, click on the button below:




3 Responses to “Funeral services set for Sister Teresa Rigel”

  1. Jodi Creten on April 7th, 2016 5:52 pm

    A twinkle in her eyes and always a smile on her face- that was our Teresa. Sympathy to all of our Motherhouse sisters who lived and rubbed shoulders with her. May she rest in God’s peace.

  2. Sr susan klepper on April 7th, 2016 8:50 am

    My sympathy to her families, both natural born and religious. I didn’t know her well but will miss her sweet contenence and smile.

  3. Rose Tremblay on April 7th, 2016 5:20 am

    Sister Teresa Rigel was a wonderful sister of st Joseph. I have been bless to have known her for many years and taken care of her. Sister always had a smile on her face, and still wanted to help take care of the sisters. May you rest in peace. I will always remember you and your kindness.

    God Bless you,

    Rose Tremblay

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