Sr. Jone Karels, age 88, of Milbank, SD, passed away on Friday, March 19, 2020, at St. William's Care Center.
Mass of Christian Burial will be held on Wednesday, March 24, 2021, at 11:00 a.m. at St. Lawrence Catholic Church in Milbank. Visitation will be held on Tuesday, March 23, from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. at the church with a vigil service starting at 7:00 p.m. Visitation will continue at the church on Wednesday, one hour prior to the Mass. Father Gary DeRouchey will celebrate the Mass, and burial will be at Daughters of St. Mary of Providence Cemetery in Lake Zurich, IL.
The funeral Mass will be livestreamed, recorded and viewable below this obituary.
Jone Ann Karels was born on May 2, 1932, to Simon Peter and Rose Regina (Strei) Karels. She was the fifth of eleven children, six girls and five boys. She was born at home on the farm place three miles from Odessa, MN. Even though her address technically was Odessa because the town had a post office and railroad station, the family always called Rosen, MN, their home. Rosen was founded by German, Catholic farmers who settled in the area and built St. Joseph’s Church and parochial school. They also brought the Benedictine Sisters from Crookston, MN, to teach their children. Jone grew up in a very Catholic family and community. Her childhood was a happy, stable, and carefree one. Early on, she manifested her love of reading and study. She excelled in her classes in elementary school. Her four years of high school were spent at the Benedictine Boarding School in Crookston, MN. Although she loved her studies, she missed her home and family very much. Her two older sisters had already entered the Daughters of St. Mary of Providence (DSMP) in Chicago. Jone felt it was God’s will that she, too, enter the religious life. She often said that leaving her home and her family was the biggest sacrifice of her life. She entered the convent on October 7, 1950, and made her religious vows on August 22, 1953.
Sr. Jone served in several places including Rhode Island, Pennsylvania, Illinois, Minnesota, Michigan, and Bogotá, Colombia (four years). She served at St. William’s Care Center in Milbank for 27 years. She served in a variety of jobs which included teaching school, cooking, activity director, housekeeping, CNA, x-ray technician, instrument nurse in surgery, sacristan, and working with the developmentally disabled.
In her free time, Sr. Jone enjoyed puzzles and games, especially Scrabble, and learning South Dakota’s history. She was an avid reader, reading four to five books a week! In her final weeks, she enjoyed reading with her sister, Sr. Genevieve. She loved plants and flowers; with her green thumb, she would plant flowers every year. She loved watching the rabbits outside, enjoyed chocolate ice cream, and almost always could be found praying the Rosary.
Sr. Jone is survived by her sisters: Sr. Genevieve Karels of Lake Zurich, Illinois; Mariva (Patrick) Brodigan of Oregon; and Patricia (Lowell) Peterson of Florida; brothers: Roman (Shirley) Karels of Ortonville, Minnesota; and Thomas (Carole) Karels; and many nieces and nephews.
She was preceded in death by her parents; sisters: Sr. Loretta Karels and Evelyn Vincent; and brothers: Stanley, Bernard and Steven Karels.
In lieu of flowers and plants, Sr. Jone suggested donations be made to the missions and other worthy causes. One suggestion was to Father Scott Donahue, Mercy Home for Boys and Girls, 1140 Jackson Blvd, Chicago, IL, 60607.
Please see our Resources page for a list of local florists.
Mercy Home for Boys & Girls
1140 W. Jackson Blvd., Chicago IL 60607