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Sister Rosemary Bass, MM, 88, Of Ossining, Educator In Japan For 50 Years

Sr. Rosemary Bass
Sr. Rosemary Bass Photo Credit: The Daily Voice/Contributed

OSSINING, N.Y. - Sister Rosemary Ellen Bass died  March 16. She was 88.

Sr. Bass was born Aug. 19, 1925, in Detroit, Mich., to Richard H. and Mary L. O’Donnell Bass. She entered Maryknoll at their motherhouse in Ossining, from St. Mary of Redford Parish, Redford, Mich., Sept. 6, 1945, and made her final vows at the motherhouse March 7, 1951. She had been a Maryknoll Sister for 68 years. A 1958 graduate of Maryknoll Teachers College, Maryknoll, with a Bachelor’s of Education degree, she also attended St. Mary’s High School, Redford, Mich., from which she graduated in 1943. Before entering religious life, she also worked at the Detroit Diesel Engine Division of General Motors in Detroit. She worked as a secretary of the Promotion Director for The Field Afar, the magazine now known as Maryknoll, from 1948 to 1955, and as a fourth grade teacher at Maryknoll Sisters School for Japanese in Los Angeles from 1958 to 1960, before being sent to Japan, where she would spend most of the next 49 years. She first worked in Japan at Saiin Parish, Kyoto, from 1960 to 1962, becoming an English teacher in Yokkaichi in 1963, where she served until 1971. She then served as secretary for Maryknoll Fathers Communications Office in Tokyo from 1974 to 1975, followed by teaching English at Sophia University, Tokyo, from 1975 to 1991, at Sophia Community College, also in Tokyo, from 1991 to 1994, and at the Maryknoll Sisters Convent, Kyoto, from 1994 to 1996. She also worked in Social Concerns for the Maryknoll Sisters in Japan. and ministered to Kyoto’s Filipino workers from 2000 until her retirement to the Maryknoll  Sisters Residence in Monrovia, Calif., in 2009. She then relocated to the Maryknoll Sisters Center in 2013.

Sr. Bass is survived by her nieces, Rosemary Willman of Plymouth, Mich., and Kathryn Bass of Mill Valley, Calif; nephews, Dr. Lawrence Bass of Carmichael, Calif., and David Ormsby of Canton, Mich.; and a brother-in-law, Dean Ormsby of Livonia, Mich. A Vesper service will be held  Friday, March 21 at 4:15 p.m. in the Annunciation Chapel, Maryknoll Sisters Center, Ossining. A Mass of Christian Burial will follow Saturday, March 22 at 11 a.m., also in Annunciation Chapel. Burial will be in the Maryknoll Sisters Cemetery at Maryknoll.

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