St. Joseph Sister Mary Beneva Schulte was on her daily walk July 30. The 85-year-old sister, who celebrated her 65th jubilee this year, was showing an unusual level of independence that her fellow sisters had come to regard as typical.
Tragically, Sister Mary Beneva never made it home. On the corner of Cretin Avenue and Ford Parkway, a little more than a mile from her home at Carondelet Village, she was struck by a truck about 9 a.m. and died that afternoon.
According to a report in the StarTribune, authorities investigating the incident said it appeared to be an accident and they were not likely to issue any citations.
According to Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet communications director Ann Thompson, Sister Mary Beneva was surrounded in her hospital bed by five other sisters when she died at 1:45 p.m.
“She loved to walk, she was an avid walker and walked every day,”?Thompson said. “In fact, I believe she was on her daily walk when she was hit. She would go quite far.”
Thompson noted that “honesty and compassion were the things that marked her.”
Humility is another thing that could be added to that list as well.
“She didn’t like people fussing over her,” Thompson said. “She probably would think all this fuss [about the accident] was over the top.”
Committed to the Gospel
Schulte was born in Minneapolis in 1926 and later belonged to Blessed Sacrament in St. Paul. She earned a bachelor’s degree in English/education at the College of St. Catherine (now St. Catherine University) and taught in numerous Catholic elementary schools in the Twin Cities. She retired in 2008, but continued doing ministry work for the CSJs, including teaching English as a second language.
“She was really committed to living the Gospel message,”?Thompson said. “The sisters’ charism is moving always toward profound love of God and love of neighbor without distinction. And I think her life really embodied that.”