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S. Rose Ellen Mlodzik, OP


Born to earthly life: March 26, 1913
Religious profession: August 4, 1931
Entered eternal life: September 25, 2016

I will make music to the Lord!  
                               — Psalm 108



S. Rose Ellen Mlodzik

When she was in the sixth grade, Gertrude Mlodzik attended the parochial school in town to prepare for making her Solemn Communion and Confirmation. The school was staffed by Racine Dominicans. During the noon hour, when children from town went home for dinner, Gertrude helped S. Damien clean the church. While S. Damien worked in the sanctuary, Gertrude dusted the furniture. She liked the sisters, the way they taught, and the life they lived. She knew then that she wanted to become one of them.

After graduating from eighth grade in Montello, WI, at the age of 14, Gertrude, “packed my suitcase and headed for 1209 Park Avenue” in Racine. At her reception in 1929, she received the name Sister Rose Ellen. S. Rose Ellen taught for many years in Wisconsin and Michigan, enjoying students of all ages, but she took special delight in working with the primary age children. She prepared them for their First Communion, and seeing the love and joy that shone in their eyes always touched her deeply. Being a sister for the past 80+ years and working with other members of the community has been a continual source of strength and encouragement for S. Rose Ellen. “I entered so young that I made it a point to learn much from those who had more experience,” she reflected. She learned not only good teaching methods, but how to prepare her students to live happy, God-centered lives, as well. She would like people to know that Racine Dominicans are caring people, concerned about the welfare and well-being of others, especially those who are marginalized. To younger sisters, she offers a bit of wisdom: “Don’t be afraid to seek counsel and advice. Be ready for change. Choose your friends wisely. Don’t be a workaholic; take time for fun!”