Sister Philomene Glotzbach, OSB
April 27, 1927 – July 18, 2019
We remember in prayer Sister Philomene Glotzbach, who entered into eternal life on July 18th, 2019. Her vigil will be Monday, July 22 at 7 p.m. in the monastery chapel, and the Mass of Resurrection will be celebrated there Tuesday, July 23 at 10:30 a.m.
Sister Philomene was a devoted educator for decades working mainly with children in the primary grades. Born in Paxico, Ks, one of seven children, her family remained important to her throughout her life and she delighted in their visits. She graduated from Mount St. Scholastica Academy and College and also did some graduate study in German at Montana State University and in Munich, Germany.
When sisters think about Sister Philomene, they immediately associate her with flowers. For some forty years, she planted and tended the flowers that filled the monastery dining room patio. Until nearly the last years of her life, she could be found watering plants in the main hall of the monastery, creating the bouquets that regularly graced each dining room table, or in the plant room bringing someone’s sick house plant back to health. The flowers were a reflection of her own bright friendliness to all and her ever-growing faithful life of prayer and community.
Sr Philomene Glotzbach, OSB Vigil Reflection | July 22, 2019 | Sister Barbara Conroy
The Benedictine Sisters would like to express our sympathy to Sr Philomene’s sisters Nadine, Laverne, Marian, Rosemarie and her brothers Merle and Bill, her nieces, nephews and to all those who gather with us tonight.
I would like to begin by sharing with you the final conversation I had with Philomene the Sunday before she died. Philomene was sitting in her recliner, and as I entered she gave me that beautiful smile that she greeted everyone with. As I sat down she reached out her hand and gently squeezed my hand. She then said, “I am glad you are my companion. I am so grateful for our community. I love you.” Then she said, “I am really tired.” I asked her if she was ready to see Jesus and she said without hesitation, “Yes.” The love in her heart was overflowing and she had a peace that consoled all those who entered her room.
Her love has blossomed and scattered a sweet fragrance throughout our monastery. On Sunday mornings, as we walked into the dining room you could tell Philomene had been there. She had placed beautiful flowers from her garden on each table. She was proud and delighted that others saw the beauty they created. In her recent months Philomene was so excited to take her physical therapist for a walk around the patio. She explained each flower, talked about how to plant them and to care for them. Megan, her physical therapist, commented that she walked around the patio with so much ease because she was completely focused on the flowers, a place where she created beauty for 35 years.
Philomene was faithful to the monastic life for 73 years. She came to religious life as a young woman eager to deepen her life In Jesus. She had a deep prayer life and a desire to always learn. She taught young children for 50 years, a goal she desired to accomplish, and truly enjoyed every child God had placed in her life. She was always welcoming our guest and treating them with the warmest hospitality. She glowed when her own family came. Her eyes had a special twinkle, however, when Christopher and Zachary came to visit. You had a special place in Philomene’s heart.
During the final days of her life, Philomene did not have any worries she knew that her Heavenly Father would feed her just as he had promised. To be holding her hand as she took her final breath on earth and her first breath in heaven was a true gift for me. May Philomene now be celebrating in the kingdom of God as she was promised.