When Frances Stibich was a young woman, she traveled to Detroit from her hometown of Johnstown, Pennsylvania, to visit one of her sisters, who lived on Gratiot Avenue in a flat above the Stein Hardware store. During that visit, she happened to meet the storeowner’s son, Anthony Stein. Love quickly bloomed, and the couple married in 1922.
Four children resulted from that union: Dorothy Antoinette, Ruth Marie, Eugene, and Barbara Ann. Ruth Marie, the future Sister Anne Bernadette Stein, was born on September 1, 1926, in Detroit.
The family lived in St. Anthony Parish, and Ruth Marie attended the parish school for the first and last parts of her elementary education. As she put it in her life story, “My sister went there to school for all twelve years but my brother and I kind of shopped around for a while.”
That resulted in her spending two years at the Stevens Open Air School in Detroit. “Open Air” schools were established to help combat the spread of tuberculosis by providing facilities that had plenty of fresh air and good ventilation, and an uncle of the Stein children had been exposed to TB. Eugene spent four years there, while Ruth Marie attended for three years, from 1935 to 1938, and then went back to St. Anthony School.
Read more about Sister Anne Bernadette (pdf)
Memorial gifts may be made to Adrian Dominican Sisters, 1257 East Siena Heights Drive, Adrian, Michigan, 49221.
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Sister Anne Bernadette Stein was my freshman teacher at Holy Cross High Schoolin Santa Cruz, California. I used to stay after school to talk with her because shewas so kindly approachable and I was having first thoughts about being a sister.I admitted that to none, hardly even to myself. Of late years I sometimes spent timewith her and attended Eucharist in her room with her. Always a great blessing!She has always been in my heart and that does not change now. My gratitude forher life, and her place in mine, has no words to express it. Recently we spent many hours just sitting quietly. The kindness of the nurses and other staffto also bring me dinner to her room, where we ate off the same tray table, and their putting on a special pot of coffee for me, cannot be forgotten. Then Sr. Anne Bernadette and I went down the hall to visit Sister Kate Hartnett, her good friend. The latter was fun-filled, joyful dessert after our lovely meal together. There is no more to say. I love her forever.Sister Anele Heiges, OP
Our Adrian Dominican cemetery with its circular headstones is a beautiful place of rest for women who gave their lives in service to God — and a peaceful place for contemplation and remembrance.
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