Home » Features » On Foundation Day, Loretto Motherhouse Celebrates Jubilarians

On Foundation Day, Loretto Motherhouse Celebrates Jubilarians

Posted on June 1, 2019, by Kathleen Tighe SL

(Editor’s Note:  On April 25, 2019, Foundation Day, the Loretto Motherhouse Community celebrated Jubiliarians Genevieve Cavanaugh (80th), Mary Katherine Hammett and Kathleen Tighe (75th Diamond Jubilees), and Kay DeMarea (70th). Kathleen’s celebratory remarks follow below.)

Kathleen Tighe’s six nephews came from all over the United States to join in her Jubilee celebration. Behind Kathleen, from left, front row, are her nephews Gene and John, and, top row, Steve, Jim, Tom and Tom.
Photo by Peg Jacobs

Welcome to all! I’d like to acknowledge the wonderful Loretto Community here at the Motherhouse. They are tremendous women, each shining like stars in the heavens. Then add the extended community of  kitchen workers, Infirmary workers and housecleaning workers and others, I am very blessed and have much joy in living here.

I’d like to acknowledge my parents, Alice and Eugene Tighe, two simple people with profound faith who lived and shared the love of God daily.

Riding to Loretto on a troop train at age 16

I entered Loretto in October 1943 at the age of 16 after graduating from high school. This was in the middle of World War II. When I got on the train in Los Angeles I found it to be a troop train, as the military had taken over all the trains and buses.

I was surprised that there were no seats available so I sat on my suitcase overnight all the way to Pueblo, Colo., where I visited my sister Carolyn Mary. From Pueblo to St. Louis I got a seat on a bench in the women’s restroom. From St. Louis to Louisville and on to Loretto I did get a seat. I didn’t mind it but accepted it as part of my new adventure. I have not been unhappy even one day  of my more than 75 years in Loretto.

‘I have not been unhappy even one day  of my more than 75 years in Loretto.’

Following in her siblings’ footsteps

My four older sisters graduated from St. Mary’s Academy in Denver and four years in a row entered Loretto in the June class. They were: Lucina, Alice Eugene, Ann Virginia and Carolyn Mary. I added up the years beginning in 1932 when Lucina entered and found that up to the present, the five Tighe girls have given 369 years of service to the Church and the world. If you add in the 15 years that our youngest sister, Helen, served in the Immaculate Heart Community, the total is 384 years.

Family, friends come to celebrate with Kathleen

Kathleen Tighe’s 4-and-a-half-year-old great-great-nephew, Kevin, plays the violin with 6-year-old great-great-niece, Morgan. They stole the show at the Foundation Day concert in which their parents played the trumpet. Morgan closed the program by accompanying herself and singing ‘Amazing Grace.’
Photo by Peg Jacobs

I had two brothers, Gene and Chuck, and each of them had three sons. I’m delighted that the six of them are here today. I’d like to introduce them, along with my other out-of-town guests to you now. My brother Gene’s oldest son, Gene from Washington, D.C.; Tom and his wife Peggy, their son Nathan, his wife Ashley and their two children, Morgan who is 6 and Kevin who is 4, all from North Carolina; my brother Gene’s youngest son, Steve, from Florida; my brother Chuck’s oldest son, Jim, from Southern California; and the second son, John, from Dallas; and the youngest son, Tom, from Southern California.

Also here are Barbara Nicholas, our current president and Pearl McGivney, our past president, from Florida.

Our Community is divided into small groups who meet twice a year to discuss the business of Loretto. Our Community Group has been together since the very beginning, meeting in Northern California and on Zoom. The group changed its meeting this time to Loretto to join in the celebration. Members are Vicki Schwartz, Therese Stawowy,  Barb Wander and Carolyn Jaramillo.

Also here is my good friend for many years, Martha Ann Kirk, an Incarnate Word Sister from San Antonio. When Kay and I were in Northern California we developed an extended community who prayed together, played together and celebrated birthdays and holidays together.

I’m happy to introduce Richard Maggi, Sebastian Artardo and Andy Utiger all from Northern California.

I’d also like to make special mention of our dear friend Kevin Bradt, S.J., who died too soon. He was an integral part of our community.


Kathleen Tighe SL

Kathleen Tighe SL is celebrating her 75th jubilee this year as a Sister of Loretto. She is one of five Tighe siblings who joined the congregation. Her youngest sister served the Immaculate Heart Community. Together, they have given 384 years of service to date to the Church and the world.
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  1. Avatar Martha Liston on September 27, 2019 at 6:02 pm

    I love you Sister Mary Venard. Martha Liston
    Loretta Academy. Kansas City MO. Class of 1966

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