Sisters of Notre Dame…Missioned to Incarnate the Love of our good and provident God

Sister Maria Raphaele

Sister Maria Raphaele                  ND 4719                    PDF Download

Johanna Horlemann

Maria Regina Province, Coesfeld, Germany

Date and Place of Birth:                 April 06, 1930           Kervenheim
Date and Place of Profession:       April 13, 1955            Mülhausen
Date and Place of Death:               August 16, 2023        Mülhausen, Haus Salus
Date and Place of Funeral:            August 23, 2023        Mülhausen, Convent Cemetery

“You led me forth into the open field; you, o Lord, are light for my lamp“.-Ps. 18: 20.29

In her last phase of life, Sister Maria Raphaele was very limited by her increasing visual impairment so that she had to keep looking for her room. When God called her home in the early morning of August 16, she found her final dwelling place with Him.

Sister Maria Raphaele (Johanna Hendrina Horlemann) was born in Kervenheim – today the pilgrimage town of Kevelaer – on April 6, 1930. She was the second of the seven children born to Gertrud and Alfons Horlemann. Her father ran a blacksmith’s shop and both parents were firmly involved in the business so that mainly the grandmother was responsible for the household and the upbringing of the children. How important and directional this was, especially for Johanna, became obvious by the fact that Sister Maria Raphaele kept quoting “Omma” and that she even called for her during the last weeks of her life.

On May 10, 1952, Johanna was admitted as a postulant to the then provincial center of Mülhausen. After her novitiate Sr. Maria Raphaele was first trained as a gardener and worked in this field for about ten years. After a further training as a kindergarten teacher, she ministered as an educator, as a group and home leader, and as local superior in various houses of the former province of Mülhausen, e.g., in Kempen, Geldern-Baersdonk, Wachtendonk, Aachen, and Duisburg-Marxloh.

After leaving her ministry in the educational field, Sister Maria Raphaele moved to Laurentiushaus in Grefrath in 1999. There she got involved in the parish, she was active in bazaars and the Romanian aid program; besides this, she ran a very orderly Caritas shop. She was always available for all matters concerning the parish.

In addition, Sister was involved in the Protestant nursing home in Oedt, she prepared prayer services or offered to pray the rosary. When she noticed that her physical and mental weaknesses increased, she gave up this ministry although she was offered to be taken by car.

When the convent at Laurentiushaus was closed, Sister M. Raphaele moved to Haus Salus in April 2010. Here she worked as a sacristan until 2012. Sister immediately felt at ease in Haus Salus and enjoyed her retirement; she participated in the activities that were offered and, in the evening, she enjoyed walking in nature.

While she suffered from dementia, she kept surprising us by her comments and answers which often “hit the nail on the head“.

All her life was marked by serenity and down-to-earthness, which she expressed in her remarks and by her behavior.

In faith we are convinced that Sister Maria Raphaele has now found wideness and security in God’s light.

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