Catholic Diocese of Spokane, Washington

From the

Official News Magazine of the Diocese of Spokane

Deacon Eric Meisfjord, Editor
P.O. Box 48, Spokane WA 99210
(509) 358-7340; FAX: (509) 358-7302

Three Idaho Benedictine Sisters celebrate golden jubilee of profession

the Inland Register

(From the July 2, 2009 edition of the Inland Register)

The public is invited to attend the 50th Anniversary of Monastic Profession for Benedictine Sisters Mary Kay Henry, Mary Geis and Cecile Marie Uhlorn at the Monastery of St. Gertrude in Cottonwood, Idaho.

Celebrations will be held Saturday, July 11, 2009 at 1:30 pm in the monastery chapel, with a reception following.

For more information, directions or to arrange accommodations please send e-mail to or call 208-962-3224. All are welcome.

Sister Mary Kay Henry: “Marking my 50th Jubilee within the context of the monastery’s centennial celebration is a privileged moment. I have been an active character in more than half of our community’s story in Cottonwood.”

Sister Mary Kay served as Religious Education Director for Assumption Parish, Spokane, as well as several parishes in Idaho. She also ministered as a classroom teacher in Idaho.

She also has been a formation director, director of retreat ministry, prioress, and Director of Development for the monastery.

Sister Mary Geis: When Sister Mary Geis made her first monastic profession 50 years ago, she was answering a call she heard as a child growing up on the Camas Prairie. From first grade through high school, the community at the Monastery of St. Gertrude was a strong influence in her life, and in fourth grade, she announced that she was going to be a Sister.

Her subsequent 50 years of ministry as a Benedictine Sister were varied, including teaching primary school in Idaho schools, and medical records and secretarial work in Idaho and at Seattle University.

When she retired from hospital work, she continued to serve in the monastery as assistant prioress, procurator, house coordinator and sacristan.

“There has been an underlying joy in this monastic life,” said Sister Mary, “serving and living in Idaho, but touching the whole world through prayer and love.”

Sister Cecile Marie Uhlorn: “I have had a blessed life as a Benedictine Sister, and I can’t believe it has been 50 years.”

Much of her monastic life was spent as a teacher in schools throughout Idaho, as well as campus ministry in Moscow, Idaho, and St. Martin College (now University) in Olympia, Wash.

She plays the piano, organ and guitar and serves her community as liturgist and organist. She is also involved in ministry at St. Mary Hospital in Cottonwood.

While traveling in Europe, she spent time at St. Andreas Convent in Sarnen, Switzerland, the founding community of the Sisters who established the Monastery of St. Gertrude, and returned there to spend six years as that community’s organist.

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