"She was a friend to those in high positions as well as to those struggling to survive. Kathie’s friendships were all based on mutual love and respect.” — Patricia Parks
Kathie Daily †
2011 Woman of Faith lived the Salvatorian Mission
Kathie Daily completed her 25 years of service to the Sisters of the Divine Savior as she lived—with grace and gratitude. Kathie passed away last March and now is being honored posthumously with the 2011 Woman of Faith Award. She received multiple nominations for this year’s award, although her name rarely appeared among the movers and shakers in the margins of charitable organization letterheads.
Kathie loved to work in the trenches of non-profit organizations where she could get to know the people she served. She was not a “professional volunteer,” but rather, a seasoned public relations practitioner who came to identify so closely with the mission of the Sisters of the Divine Savior, that little by little, her faith worked its way from her soul to her shirtsleeve.
Like many active parishioners and loyal alumnae, Kathie served in many ways at St. Mary’s Visitation Parish in Elm Grove and Divine Savior Holy Angels High School (DS ’60) right in her own back yard. In those places Kathie rubbed shoulders with people much like herself, motivated by fellowship and friendship. But Kathie lived the Salvatorian mission “to foster awareness of a loving God by whatever means” in places far from her personal stomping grounds. She worked tirelessly with the Sherman Park Association of Religious Communities, and became a familiar face at Milwaukee’s Cathedral Center Shelter and Repairers of the Breach.
Serving on behalf of the poor and vulnerable is where Kathie’s faith came alive as she saw the light of Christ in people who are often invisible to the rest of the world. It was never about serving soup or raising funds. Kathie was at her best when she could make personal connections at the soup kitchen or homeless shelter, and hear the life stories of Hadley Terrace Apartment residents in Milwaukee’s central city.
In her nomination for the Woman of Faith Award, Sister Mary Lee Grady, SDS, describes Kathie’s gift. “During her 25-plus years, Kathie consistently showed extraordinary Gospel-inspired service to her co-workers, children, friends and others. Her life was one of generous service and constant faith in God. During her struggle with pancreatic cancer, Kathie never lost her faith in God. Prayer continued to be her mainstay. ”
Likewise, Patricia Parks paid tribute to Kathie in her written nomination of her long-time friend and neighbor. “ Kathie lived and died in a way which taught valuable lessons to all who knew and loved her. She was a friend to those in high positions as well as to those struggling to survive. Kathie’s friendships were all based on mutual love and respect.”
Peacemaker, bridge builder, yet Kathie never held a rose-colored view of the world or what she could do to make it right. She never stopped trying to change the world for the better, and she always took time to cherish the friendships and faith that sustained her in that mission.
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