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

Sister Mary Brenden

Sister Mary Brenden                 ND 4401                PDF Download
Marian Frances Kress

Immaculate Heart of Mary Province, Covington, Kentucky, USA

Date and Place of Birth      June 11, 1924 Minnewaukan, North Dakota
Date and Place of Profession August 10, 1950   Covington, Kentucky
Date and Place of Death       April 9, 2016     Covington, Kentucky
Date and Place of Burial     April 14, 2016  Covington, Kentucky

BrendenMarian Frances, a Native American Chippewa in the Turtle Mountain Tribe, was born on June 11, 1924, in Graham’s Island, Minnewaukan, North Dakota. Her parents, William and Evelyn Lenoir Kress, raised one boy and two girls; Marian was the second oldest. Her early years were not easy as she lost both parents by the time she graduated from high school, and then contracted tuberculosis at the age of 20. After a long recovery, Marian went to work as secretary at St. Augustine Indian Mission in Winnebago, Nebraska. Here she met the Sisters of Notre Dame. At the age of 26, she joined the Sisters of Notre Dame and made her profession of vows on August 10, 1950.

Sister Mary Brenden began her ministry in Cincinnati, Ohio, at St. Aloysius Orphanage in 1949, teaching and caring for the kindergarten boys. She continued her ministry while completing her Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education at Our Lady of Cincinnati College and her Master of Education at Xavier University. For over 43 years she worked in child care and elementary teaching. After retiring, Sister moved to the Provincial Center, often visiting and reading to the sisters in Lourdes Hall Care Center. She was also active in the SND Apostolate of Prayer.

Sister Mary Brenden was a great community member to live with because she always had interesting stories to tell, whether about the children she taught or past experiences in her native North Dakota. She was very proud of her Native American heritage. She was happy to share her heritage as a guest speaker at different local schools.

Sr. Brenden did not know a stranger. No matter where she went, she made friends with everyone, whether it was the waitress at a restaurant or the receptionist in the doctor’s office. She was always extremely grateful for anything one did for her or gave to her. “Thank you” came easily to her lips.

Though we know she longed to meet her Beloved Spouse, we will forever miss her sweet smile and happy disposition.

May she rest in peace!

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