Sister Elizabeth Anne Schneider
I had the pleasure of working with Sister Elizabeth Anne for five years at Marycrest College. As the Administrative Assistant for the Fine Arts Communication Division, my path crossed hers daily and most especially during productions of the Marycrest Performing Arts Series. Occasionally I assisted her with sewing costumes for productions. I remember sewing booties that fit over shoes for the Munchkins of “the Wizard of Oz.”
Sr. Elizabeth Anne was born Elizabeth Mary on August 18, 1928 in St. Charles, Missouri, to Vincent and Ann Marheineke Schneider. She was one of four children and is survived today by a brother Dr. Thomas Schneider, MD, two sisters-in-law and several nieces and nephews.
Psalm 102 “You have changed my mourning into dancing.” She entered the Congregation of the Humility of Mary in October 1950. Her first vows were pronounced in July 1953 and final profession in July 1956.
Psalm 102 “So my soul sings songs to you unceasingly.”
She received her Bachelor of Arts degree in music in 1949 from Marycrest College, her Master of Arts degree in music in 1950 from the University of Kansas in Lawrence, and her PhD in higher education in 1970 from Southern Illinois University in Carbondale. She continued music education at the University of Iowa, Michigan State University and the University of Minnesota.
Psalm 102 “Oh my God I will thank you forever.”
Sr. Elizabeth Anne’s ministry in music education took place in Davenport at St. Vincent as music teacher from 1953 – 1960 and at Marycrest College as a faculty member from 1953–1966.
Sister was Assistant to the Dean at Marycrest College from 1966 – 1968, Assistant to the Dean while a student at Southern Illinois University at Carbondale from 1968–1970 and Vice President of Academic Affairs at Marycrest from 1970–1974.
She worked in college administration as Bi-college Coordinator of Cooperative Programs from 1974 – 1975 when the College of St. Theresa and St. Mary’s College in Winona, MN were merging.
Between 1975 and 1988 she was associate professor at Marycrest, teaching music history, theory and music appreciation. At that same time she was director of the very successful Marycrest Performing Arts Series.
From 1988-1996 she was vice president of the Congregation of the Humility of Mary with Sr. Pauline Tursi as President. During the early years she was a member of the committee that finalized the revision of the congregation’s Constitutions, submitting them to Rome for approval. She also participated in planning and implementing the construction of the new wing and chapel at Bishop Drumm Retirement Center where the Sisters of the Humility of Mary would receive long-term care.
Sister E. A., as she was commonly known on campus, served on the Marycrest College Board of Trustees, participated in the development of the concept of Teikyo Marycrest University and served on that Board of Trustees.
She was loved and respected by the students in the Fine Arts Department, many of whom continued to use their performing talents. One of her students, who graduated with a degree in the Performing Arts, went on to receive a Masters in Music. He came back and worked with Sr. Elizabeth Anne for several years before completing his Doctorate in Vocal Music Education. Today Phillip Collister is Chair & Professor of the Department of Music at Towson University in Maryland.
In March 1997 she received a certificate from the Mexican American Cultural Center for completion of the Intensive Pastoral Spanish program.
Psalm 102 “Joy comes with dawn.”
As the sun rose each day, Sr. Elizabeth Anne enjoyed music, computer games, science fiction, travel and reading. In her retirement years, she was a faithful volunteer for the Mississippi Valley Regional Blood Center. She served as a member of the board of directors of the Quad-City Times Plus 60 Club. She spent countless hours sorting surplus sample medicines from doctors’ offices in Missouri and the Quad Cities. This medicine was given to Sr. Ana María Orozco for the people in Chiapas Mexico and to others. She also gave of her time to proof read printed materials before they found their way to the reader’s hands.
One of her later projects was the Heifer Project conducted at Christmas time. Donations were used to buy animals for farmers in Third World countries.
Among her gifts to the community and to the world was as the Contact Sister for one of our long time Associates, Diane Schlachter. The time and energy they gave to this association was valued by both. They had a friendship that challenged them both to grow personally and to continue to develop a deeper relationship with their God.
Sister served on many CHM committees such as a founding member of the CHM/HM committee, and member of the Finance/Stewardship committee.
As I indicated Sister Elizabeth Anne liked to travel In the later years she, Sr. Maggie Bennett and I would go for a day trip to Lincoln IL. We started with lunch and then had dessert at the Russell Stover Candy outlet store. Our purchases included more than a piece for dessert. She always brought candy back to share at the Center.
Our trips and time together were always a delight.
Sr. Marcia Eckerman, CHM