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Sister of Charity Rosalie Riggio dies at age 90

02/07/2020 | Comments

DELHI TOWNSHIP, Ohio. Sister of Charity of Cincinnati Rosalie Riggio died Dec. 25, 2019, at the age of 90 at Pikes Peak Hospice. Sister Rosalie was born on May 8, 1929 to Joseph and Mary (Glaviano) Riggio in Jansen, Colorado. She was the fourth child of six, with two dying at birth. She was a Sister of Charity for 72 years. When making vows she chose the name Joseph Maureen.

Sister Rosalie grew up in Trinidad. She attended Pachico grade school and graduated from Holy Trinity High School in 1947, where she was taught by the Sisters of Charity. Sister Rosalie entered the Sisters of Charity of Cincinnati on Sept. 8, 1947. The kindness and thoughtfulness of the sisters she knew, along with their involvement with the students in activities, influenced her decision.

Sister Rosalie earned a Bachelor of Science degree in education from the College of Mount St. Joseph in 1960. Graduate work took her to the University of Colorado, St. John’s Cleveland and the University of New Mexico. 

Sister Rosalie’s ministries spanned more than 40 years in education as an elementary teacher, beginning in the primary grades. She first went to Sacred Heart School in Denver in 1949. In 1954 she came east to St. Michael School in Findlay, Ohio; next it was St. Rose, Cincinnati (1957-58); Holy Cross, Cincinnati (1958-59); Cathedral, Denver (1959-60); Holy Trinity, Trinidad (1960-63); Loyola, Denver (1963-67); and St. Mary, Albuquerque, New Mexico (1967-73).

At St. Joseph Parish in Pueblo (1973-77), Sister Rosalie developed and administered a family religious education program. In 1977 she went back to the classroom at St. Rose of Lima in Denver for one year. She taught from 1978-81 at Pauline Memorial School in Colorado Springs, followed by 10 years at Divine Redeemer. It was from there that she retired from formal education but continued living in the area.

In 1991, Sister began volunteering in a nonmedical caregiving capacity in assisted-living facilities, running errands, driving residents to doctor appointments and visiting the frail elderly in their homes. It became a labor of love. For more than 15 years, she served as the sacristan at St. Joseph Parish in Colorado Springs.

Sister Rosalie is survived by her sisters Caroline Kokjohn and Pauline Bonfadini, nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her sister Carmela Riggio.

Memorial Masses were celebrated at St. Joseph Church in Colorado Springs and at the Sisters of Charity Motherhouse.

Burial followed in the Sister of Charity Cemetery.

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