Sister Rita Marie (Hilary) Mullen, O.S.B.

October 10, 1915 – October 30, 2006

Sister Rita Marie (Hilary) Mullen, OSB, , a Benedictine Sister of Mount St. Scholastica, died October 30, 2006. The vigil service will be Thursday, Nov. 2, 2006, at 7 pm in the monastery chapel. The Mass of Resurrection will be celebrated there Friday, Nov. 3, 2006, at 10:30 am.

Born to Joseph Francis and Nora McCauley Mullen Oct. 10, 1915 in Creston, Iowa, Sister Rita Marie worked briefly there and then entered Mount St. Scholastica in 1931, graduating from the Mount Academy in 1933. She earned the Bachelor of Science in education from Mount St. Scholastica College, and the Master’s in education from St. Louis University in 1963. She taught every grade from kindergarten to twelfth grade, using her talents to help students in five states learn math, business, home economics, and music. She traveled to Mexico to recruit students for the Mount Academy, where she taught for almost twenty years.

Sister Rita Marie was predeceased by her parents, her brothers Francis (1982) and Joseph (1983), and her sisters Theresa (Mrs. John C. Minard, 1984)and Agnes (Mrs. Henry M. Hansen, Moline, Ill.). She is survived by a niece, Patricia VandeVoode (Ocala, Fl.), a cousin, Thomas McCann (Seoul, Korea), and by her monastic community.

Memorials may be sent to Mount St. Scholastica, Atchison, Kansas.

Let us remember her gratefully in our prayers. 


The memorial card for Sister Rita Marie

“Here am I, Lord; I come to do your will.”
Hebrews 10:7

Sister Rita Marie Mullen was the second daughter of Joseph Francis and Nora McCauley Mullen of Creston, Iowa. She entered Mount St. Scholastica in September 1931 and made monastic profession in 1933. She earned the Master’s

degree in education from St. Louis University.Vivacious and good-humored, Sister Rita Marie (Hilary) looked on the bright side of things. She was energetic and cheerful, quick to speak and quick to act. She taught home economics, business, math and music, trained servers, and was sacristan and organist. Students liked her; she didn’t hold a grudge and kept them so busy and focused that discipline was not a problem. She was inspiring and practical and helped them discover and use their talents, applying what they had learned in class to school projects and jobs. Everyone was “dear” or “honey” to her. Sister Rita Marie taught every grade from kindergarten through senior high school with summer teaching for a time in the Benedictine College business department. In addition, she taught religion in vacation schools, helped chaperone high school travel activities, and recruited in Mexico for the Mount Academy where she taught for almost 20 years. Her activity was grounded in her love of her vocation and in a prayer life sustained by the liturgy of the hours. If she could help someone, she did so – life was that simple. Let us remember her in thankful prayer.