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Farewell to Sister Catherine Marie Kreta '61, CSJ

September 30, 2020

Sister Catherine Marie Kreta ’61, CSJ
March 22, 1933 – September 8, 2020 

Mount Saint Mary’s bids a fond farewell to Sister Catherine Marie Kreta, who passed away on September 8. 

Sister Catherine Marie Kreta '61, CSJ, will be sorely missed by the Mount community
Sister Catherine Marie Kreta '61, CSJ, will be sorely missed by the Mount community

A graduate of Bishop Conaty – Our Lady of Loretto High School in Los Angeles, Sr. Catherine Marie Kreta was proud to be a “Conaty girl” before coming to the Mount, where she obtained her bachelor’s in English and social science. She fulfilled her life of service in a number of roles from teacher, school and hospital administrator, spiritual director and supervisor of elementary education in the province. She also served as provincial superior from 1986 to 1992 and on the Mount’s Board of Trustees from 2006 to 2015.

Known for her energy, enthusiasm and humor, Kreta had served as justice coordinator for the Los Angeles CSJs since 2000. She had a long career as an educator and leader for justice in other areas as well, as she was heavily involved with the Coalition to Abolish Slavery and Trafficking (CAST), served as its board chairperson, and was one of a group of people to receive a Founders’ Changemaker Award for her work with the organization.

At a 2016 CAST gala, front row (left to right): Sr. Catherine Marie Kreta, CSJ, Sr. Joan Mary O'Dwyer, CSJ, L.A. City Councilmember Nury Martinez and MSMU President Ann McElaney-Johnson, with L.A. County Task Force partners in the back row.
At a 2016 CAST gala, front row (left to right): Sr. Catherine Marie Kreta, CSJ, Sr. Joan Mary O'Dwyer, CSJ, L.A. City Councilmember Nury Martinez and MSMU President Ann McElaney-Johnson, with L.A. County Task Force partners in the back row.

Kreta was committed to empowering women and rallied the local and global community to end exploitation and violence. Her work led to many trafficking victims’ freedom and healing.

“Whenever Sister Catherine Marie ministered, she was found to have an understanding and compassionate heart,” said Los Angeles CSJ sisters in their tribute to her. “Those who knew her recognized that she was fun, had a good sense of humor, was generous, a good cleaner and, sometimes, a good cook.”

Two lifelong friends from high school, Patricia A. Sullivan and Monica Valdez Weisbrich, wrote: “Kreta, as we called her, had a car – a black coupe of some variety, with a tiny backseat. There were sometimes five of us; sometimes eight. We somehow always managed to fit in ‘Kreta’s Kar.’ Great times; great memories. She was fun, bright and a leader. We were to have lunch with Sr. Catherine last fall, but she fell ill and couldn’t make it. A disappointment then; a heartbreak now. Rest in Peace. God is glad to see you. Thanks for the buggy ride.”

She will be missed by her many friends in the Mount community.