Sister Susan Pryor, 88, a Sister of Charity of Leavenworth (SCL) for almost 69 years, died on May 10, 2019 in Ross Hall at the SCL Mother House.
Sister Susan Pryor, 88, a Sister of Charity of Leavenworth (SCL) for almost 69 years, died on May 10, 2019 in Ross Hall at the SCL Mother House. A teacher and school principal for 33 years, Sister Susan loved children. She was equally devoted to her ministries of pastoral care to the elderly and managing their residence for two archbishops of the Archdiocese of Kansas City in Kansas.
Born in Pittsburg, Kansas, Mary Sue was the first child of James and Elizabeth Quinn Pryor. A brother, twin sisters and another brother followed. Mary Sue graduated grade school and high school in Oswego, Kansas. After attending Girls’ State at the University of Kansas, she set her sights on college in Lawrence. However, her mom insisted on Saint Mary College, Leavenworth, to further nurture her daughter’s faith. Following a bout of homesickness, Mary Sue grew to love the college; she also recognized her call to religious life. She entered the SCL Community on Aug. 18, 1950. She professed vows as Sister James on Aug. 15, 1952, and later returned to her baptismal name, Sister Mary Susan.
From August 1952 through August 1968, Sister Susan had 15 assignments in 16 years – most involved teaching first- and second-graders. She spent the next 18 years at Our Lady and St. Rose Parish, Kansas City, Kansas, as a teacher, principal and then pastoral associate. Sister Susan transitioned from working with young children to ministering to older adults and shut-ins. She continued this pastoral ministry at Marian Hall, a residence for the elderly. Over an 11-year period there, Sister became manager and then administrator. Her educational achievements included a bachelor’s degree, two master’s degrees and a license in adult care home administration.
Her next ministry placed Sister Susan as a secretary and aide to Archbishop Ignatius J. Strecker. She enjoyed working with the archbishop on the book he was writing on The Story of the Church in Kansas. Sister became lasting friends with the archbishop and the Strecker family. She continued her ministry to the archdiocesan Church assisting Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann. Sister retired from active ministry in July 2014. She moved to the SCL Mother House in August 2016. Her Irish roots, her values and prayer were her guiding lights through all her years.
Preceding Sister Susan in death were her parents; her two brothers, James E. Pryor Jr. and Patrick J. Pryor; and her SCL relative Sister Kathleen Coman (cousin). Survivors include her sisters, Janet Pryor, Gladstone, Missouri, and Judy Bieberdorf (Roger), Mesa, Arizona; nieces and nephews; and her SCL Community.
A vigil will be held at 7 p.m. on Thursday, May 16, 2019 in Ross Chapel, SCL Mother House, Leavenworth. Mass of Resurrection will be celebrated in Ross Chapel at 10:30 a.m. on Friday, May 17, 2019. Interment will follow in Mount Olivet Cemetery, Mother House grounds. Memorial contributions can be made to the Sisters of Charity of Leavenworth, 4200 S. 4th St., Leavenworth, KS 66048. Arrangements by R.L. Leintz Funeral Home, Leavenworth.