In Loving Memory…

Sister Karen Anne Jackson, CSC; main image 1

Sister Karen Anne Jackson, CSC

Memorial Mass

Wednesday, April 19, 2023

Memorial Mass: 10:45 a.m.
Church of Our Lady of Loretto
Notre Dame, Indiana

Visitors are welcome; please adhere to mask and social distance guidelines while in the church.

You may view the livestreamed Mass on YouTube.

Read the memories shared at Sister Karen Anne's funeral.

Burial Arrangements

Tuesday, March 14, 2023

Prayer Service: 1:30 p.m.
Church of Our Lady of Loretto
Saint Mary’s, Notre Dame, Indiana 

Immediately followed by the Gathering to Receive the Body with Final Commendation.

Sister Karen Anne Jackson, CSC
(Sister M. John Bosco) 

June 28, 1938—March 13, 2023 

We share news of the death of Sister Karen Anne Jackson, CSC, who died at 12:03 a.m. on March 13, 2023, in Saint Mary’s Convent, Notre Dame, Indiana. Sister Karen Anne entered the Congregation from Detroit, Michigan, on August 1, 1956. Her initial profession of vows took place on February 2, 1959.

Please join us in prayer for Sister as we renew our faith in the resurrected Jesus and strengthen our hope that all the departed will be raised to eternal life.

Sister Karen Anne Jackson lived as a consecrated woman religious for 64 years as a Sister of the Holy Cross. When she died in the first minutes of the midnight hour of March 13, 2023, at Saint Mary’s Convent, she had already turned her will and her life over to the care of God.

Karen Anne Jackson was born on June 28, 1938, in Detroit, Michigan. Her parents, William and Mary Catherine (Horgan) Jackson, were New York natives who moved to Detroit within a few years of the birth of Karen’s only sibling, Mary Lou, in 1934. Karen attended elementary and secondary grades at St. Mary of Redford School, Detroit, where she was taught by the Sisters, Servants of the Immaculate Heart of Mary. While in high school, she was co-captain of the girls’ basketball team. In the two years leading up to her senior year, Karen devoted herself to serious prayer and discernment of her vocation to the religious life. On August 1, 1956, a few months after graduating high school, Karen entered the Sisters of the Holy Cross, Notre Dame. When applying to the novitiate, she wrote that she wished “to do God’s Holy Will.” After receiving the holy habit six months later, she became Sister Mary John Bosco.

Sister John Bosco was an elementary school teacher for 22 years. She taught first through eighth grades at Holy Cross-sponsored schools in Indiana, Illinois and Michigan from 1959 to 1981. In 1967, the same year she returned to her baptismal name, she graduated from Saint Mary’s College, Notre Dame, with a bachelor's degree in elementary education. During Sister Karen Anne’s assignment to Most Holy Redeemer School, Evergreen Park, Illinois, from 1977 to 1981, she also volunteered in neighboring Park Ridge, Illinois, at Lutheran General Hospital, where patients could be treated for addictions. Her experience at the hospital led to a long ministry in mental health and rehabilitation services.

As a woman religious with an honest and bold personality, Sister Karen Anne also found great satisfaction in leading and facilitating retreats for women with addictions, which she did for more than 30 years. She described these retreats as a blessing for herself and the women she inspired. She and others sought ongoing spiritual renewal essential for their health and well-being.

After completing a training program at Lutheran General Hospital in 1984, Sister Karen Anne served as a counselor and coordinator at Parkside Lodge of Mundelein, Mundelein, Illinois, and Lutheran General Hospital for six years. From 1990 to 1999, she continued ministering at Lutheran General Hospital and other centers offering therapeutic care and counseling. In 1999, she took a leave of absence from her ministry to care for family members and her own health.

In 2000, Sister Karen Anne returned to teaching with an assignment to Shepherd’s Flock, an intergenerational childcare center in Arlington Heights, Illinois. She taught toddlers aged 15 to 26 months old, encouraging the development of each child’s spiritual, emotional, physical and cognitive skills. While she found this ministry to be challenging, she once said that working with the children “kept my spirit young and my body moving to the varied routines that toddlers need each day.” In 2014, Sister Karen Anne transitioned to volunteering at Niles Family Services, Niles, Illinois, where she assisted the staff in developing new services to meet the needs of the multicultural residents, including daylong retreats that she directed for women.

An aggressive illness led her to move to Saint Mary’s Convent in December 2022. Her extended family, friends and Holy Cross sisters accompanied her in her last steps in this life. At the end of 84 winters, the Creator in whom she trusted has now restored her to full health in the risen Jesus, by the power of the Holy Spirit.

Sister Karen Anne requested a green burial, which was scheduled for March 14, 2023, in Our Lady of Peace Cemetery. A memorial Mass will be celebrated at a later date.

We invite you to donate to the Ministry With the Poor Fund in Sister’s name.

—Written by Madisen Toth and Sister Catherine Osimo, CSC
Sisters of the Holy Cross
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