Sister Regina Marie Novacek, OP
Sister Regina Marie Novacek, who celebrated her 75th anniversary as a Dominican Sister of Mission San Jose last year, died May 16 at the congregation's motherhouse in Fremont. She was 97.
Born Mildred Hedwig Novacek on a farm in Mount Carroll, Illinois, Sister Novacek grew up in Los Angeles where she was taught by the Dominican Sisters of Mission San Jose. The seeds of her religious vocation were planted by her mother at the time of Sister's First Communion when she spoke to Mildred about giving herself to Jesus as He was giving himself to her. She was later inspired by her teachers' dedication to prayer and their love for each other. Two years after graduating from high school, she joined the Dominican Sisters of Mission San Jose in 1941.
As an educator Sister Novacek's ministry was lived out in elementary and secondary schools in Los Angeles, Anaheim and the Bay Area for 20 years. She also spent 12 years in Congregational administration, after which she returned to the Congregation's resident schools as administrator and director of resident students.
She retired to the Motherhouse in 2003 where she devoted her energies to various internal community ministries. Her community remembered her as an "amazing woman of God, her heart was ever with the poor and with children."
The funeral Mass was held May 23 at the Dominican Sisters' Motherhouse, followed by interment in God's Acre.
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