O Choose life…by loving the Lord your God, heeding his voice and holding fast to him - Deuteronomy 30:19-20
More than 60 years ago I chose to heed God’s voice in calling me to religious life with the Grand Rapids Dominicans. I am deeply grateful for all those who have supported me on this journey, my family and friends and my Dominican Sisters who have shared with me the joys and sorrows of seeking God’s will in serving His people.
I entered this life on June 15, 1937 in Chicago, Illinois the youngest of three children born to John and Florence O’Donnell. Daily prayer, devotion to Mary, and attending Sunday Mass as a family were important influences on my life.
My education began with the Adrian Dominicans at St. Columbanus School in Chicago. In 1944 my family moved to Muskegon, Michigan where I met the Grand Rapids Dominicans. Inspired by the advice of a retreat director in my senior year at Muskegon Catholic Central, I entered the Grand Rapids Dominicans on September 8, 1955.
Teaching high school was my assigned ministry. For 12 years I directed forensics and debate and taught a variety of high school classes in the Grand Rapids and Saginaw Dioceses. In 1971, I continued my teaching ministry at Aquinas College, working with many wonderful and talented colleagues. I remained at Aquinas until my retirement in 2014.
Over the years I have appreciated the opportunity to teach students from a variety of settings: rural farming communities, mixed ethnic/racial backgrounds, and urban middle-class. I feel that these experiences have given me a better understanding of the many faces of God that He has called me to serve.
2022 – 66 Years a Sister
Pray for leadership of our country
Sister Rosemary O’Donnell teaching liturgical dance at Aquinas College.
At Aquinas College in Grand Rapids, Michigan, Dominican Sisters engage with students during Saint Stock. Sisters Ann Mason, Joan Thomas, Rosemary O’Donnell, and Megan McElroy welcome students to learn more about the Dominican charism.