In Memory

Sister Mary Howard Krotzer, IHM

July 13, 1931 – June 4, 2017

Mary Howard Krotzer, IHM

Sister Mary Howard Krotzer, IHM, of the Sisters, Servants of the Immaculate Heart of Mary died on Sunday, June 4, 2017, at Our Lady of Peace Residence in Scranton, Pennsylvania.

She was born on July 13, 1931, in Scranton, PA, and given the name Joan Ann. She was the daughter of the late Howard and Helen Hickey Krotzer. She entered the IHM Congregation on September 8, 1949, made temporary profession of her vows on May 8, 1952, and final profession of her vows on August 2, 1955.

Sister Mary Howard served as a teacher at the following schools: Laurel Hill Academy in Susquehanna, PA, from 1952 to 1953; St. Peter of Alacantra Elementary School in Port Washington, NY, from 1953 to 1957; St. Rose of Lima Elementary School in Carbondale, PA, from 1957 to 1959; Little Flower Elementary School in Bethesda, MD, from 1959 to 1963; St. Rosalia High School in Pittsburgh, PA, from 1963 to 1967; Kingston Central Catholic High School in Kingston, PA, from 1967 to 1969; Kolb High School in Masontown, PA, from 1969 to 1970; St. Mary of the Mount High School in Pittsburgh, PA, from 1970 to 1972; Maria Regina Diocesan High School in Uniondale, NY, from 1972 to 1974; Our Lady of Grace School in Greensboro, NC, from 1979 to 1980; St. Mark’s High School in Wilmington, DE, from 1982 to 1983; and Bishop Hannon High School in Scranton, PA, from 1983 to 1985. She served as principal at Kolb High School in Masontown, PA, from 1969 to 1970.

Sister served as Confraternity of Christian Doctrine (CCD) coordinator at the following: St. Ann’s Elementary School in Tobyhanna, PA, from 1974 to 1977; St. Patrick’s Parish in Milford, PA, from 1977 to 1979; St. Dominic Parish in Oyster Bay, NY in 1979; and Our Lady of Grace Parish in Greensboro, NC, from 1979 to 1980.

She was director of religious education at St. John the Baptist Parish in Pittston, PA, from 1980 to 1982, and at St. Mary of the Mount Parish in Pittsburgh, PA, in 1994.

Sister Mary Howard was director of volunteers at St. Joseph’s Hospital in Carbondale, PA, from 1985 to 1988; receptionist at IHM Center in Scranton, PA, from 1988 to 1992 and 2004 to 2011; staff member in central supply at St. Joseph’s Center in Scranton, PA, from 1992 to 1994; pastoral associate at Holy Rosary Indian Mission in Philadelphia, PA, from 1995 to 1998; pastoral associate at St. Francis of Assisi Parish in Nanticoke, PA, from 1998 to 2000; pastoral associate at St. Rose of Lima Parish in Carbondale, PA, from 2000 to 2001; pastoral associate at St. Joseph’s Parish in Hudson, PA, from 2001 to 2003; and receptionist at St. Joseph’s Center in Scranton, PA, from 2003 to 2004.

From 2012 until the time of her death, Sister Mary Howard served as a prayer minister at Our Lady of Peace Residence.

She received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Education, a Master of Science degree in Education, and a Master of Science degree in Religious Education, all from Marywood College.

She is preceded in death by a brother, Richard.

She is survived by a sister, Jean Fitt of Wharton, NJ, nieces and a nephew, grandnieces and grandnephews, cousins, and by the members of the IHM Congregation.

The funeral will be Thursday, June 8, at 11:00 a.m. with Mass of Christian Burial at Our Lady of Peace Residence, 2300 Adams Avenue in Scranton. Friends may call at Our Lady of Peace Residence on Wednesday, June 7, between 3:00 p.m. and 5:00 p.m. A prayer service will be held at 4:00 p.m. Interment will follow Mass on Thursday at St. Catherine’s Cemetery in Moscow, PA.

Memorial contributions may be made to support the retired IHM Sisters c/o the IHM Sisters Retirement Fund, IHM Center, 2300 Adams Avenue, Scranton, PA 18509.



Reprinted from “In Memoriam” section of Journey, Winter 2017 issue

Reflection given by Sister Katie Clauss, IHM Congregation Vice-President

Sister Mary Howard Krotzer, Funeral 6/8/17

With reverence we celebrate the life of our Sister Mary Howard and give thanks for her fidelity to God through her life in mission and community and her deep love for her family and friends. We are particularly mindful of Mary Howard’s family members: her sister, Jean, her nieces Sue, Linda, Kathy, and her nephew, John who join us today and for her parents, Howard and Helen and her brother, Richard who welcome her home. Let’s pause for a moment and gather into our hearts our memories of and love for Mary Howard.

There was a saying among prospectors according to the early American Film Maker, Robert Flaherty: “Go out looking for one thing, and that’s all you’ll ever find. Such was the case for Mary Howard. She spent her life focused on looking for, finding God and inviting God to find her in her life of prayer, mission and community. The scripture readings Mary Howard chose for this liturgy speak so beautifully about her relationship with God. The words of Isaiah reflect her belief that God called her by name and that she was God’s. The passage Howard chose from John’s Gospel helps us to understand that her life in mission was rooted in Jesus’ words: “everyone who sees the Son and believes in him will have eternal life.” Howard had a deep experience of God’s love and faithfully companioned those she served to recognize God through Jesus and to experience God’s love. Howard journeyed to God with those she served with love and with her marvelous ability to tell a good story, a very funny story in her own quiet way. I wondered where Howard got her material for some of the stories she told until realized that she was a great observer. She took in what was happening around her and wove it into the landscape of all that she had seen. That landscape was the launching pad for her. It gave rise to stories that brought fun and joy in the settings where they were shared. As sisters were remembering Howard over these last few days they recalled Howard’s stories that still keep them laughing.

And so we begin this liturgy with hearts filled with gratitude for Mary Howard, her family and friends, her community of 3 A, for Sisters Jean, Eleanor Mary, and Mary Kay, and all those who provided care for Mary Howard here at OLP. Jean will now place Mary Howard’s scripture on her casket. It is opened to Isaiah 43, where we hear the verse that had deep meaning for Mary Howard: “Fear not, I have redeemed you; I have called you by name; you are mine.”

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