Sister Kathleen Johnson, CSC
Celebrating Her Golden Jubilee
Sister Kathleen has two living siblings: Patrick (73) and Colleen (63). Another sister, Maureen, passed away at age 52. Her mother, Alice Murphy, was born and raised in County Kilkenny, Ireland. Alice travelled to London just before England entered World War II to start nursing school and midwifery training. She remained in London for the duration of the war.
It was World War II that brought her parents together. Sister Kathleen’s father was a GI in the Army, stationed in London for army intelligence. One Sunday, they met in Hyde Park, London, England, where they started their whirlwind courtship—as was shared with her over the years. Her parents were later married in Lewistown, Pennsylvania, in May 1947.
Sister Kathleen and her family members have a deep appreciation for both immediate and extended family, their Irish roots, and their German American heritage.
About her ministry
Sister Kathleen Johnson professed her initial vows with the Sisters of the Holy Cross on August 15, 1970, and her perpetual vows on August 3, 1975.
Sister Kathleen has spent 23 years of her ministry with the Archdiocese of Washington, D.C., 10 years with the Diocese of Columbus, Ohio, and seven years with the Diocese of Arlington, Virginia. Sister Kathleen then pursued her bachelor’s degree before returning to teach elementary and high school children from 1974 to 1982. During that time, she began her work in campus ministry and completed her graduate studies in Silver Spring, Maryland.
Her work in campus ministry continued for a total of 21 years; she finished at the Academy of the Holy Cross in Kensington, Maryland (2001–2008). She later transitioned to ministry at Holy Cross Hospital, Silver Spring, where she served until 2012. She now resides at Saint Mary’s in Notre Dame, Indiana, providing internal ministry.
Send a message!
Send Sister Kathleen a note, prayer, poem, photo, favorite memory or message using the button below. They will be collected on kudoboard.com and presented in both a slideshow and Blessing Book for her to enjoy. The deadline to be included in the printed book is July 22, 2021.
Getting to know her
My favorite activities:
I enjoy genealogy, working on family history, photography, cross-stitching and reading (especially historical works and mysteries).
Favorite time of ministry and most memorable:
My favorite time in ministry was the 22 years in high school and college campus ministry. I cherished the special interactions with faculty and students: praying with them, listening and supporting them through the good times and the sad ones; visiting patients in hospitals; leading prayer services and retreats; taking students on cultural immersion and service trips. During my 10 years at Holy Cross Academy in Kensington, Maryland, I helped lead over 30 Kairos retreats. These four-day retreats were very special experiences for students and faculty.
Another special time was my 10 years as Director of Campus Ministry at Mount Carmel. Those years were especially enriching for me. My mom and sister, Maureen, were nurses. I wanted to be a nurse, too. That was not the path I chose, however. I have a great affinity for nurses. A dear friend once said to me, “Kathy, I think God has brought the two loves of your life together” (campus ministry and nursing). How true her vision was!
A favorite story:
Four years ago, I had the privilege and joy to celebrate the 100th birthday of Sister Marie Julie. Sister “Julie” is one of the kindest persons I’ve ever known. There are hundreds of us who feel so blessed to call her “friend.” Many are former students from Saint Patrick’s Academy in Washington, D.C. Sister Julie is a woman of great faith and prayer. The impact Sister Julie had on myself, and so many others, was evidenced by the outpouring of love and support in honor of her centennial birthday!
My favorite songs:
Shaina Noll’s “How Could Anyone”
Whitney Houston’s “Greatest Love of All”
Josh Groban’s “You Raise Me Up”