July 23, 1927 - August 9, 2021

 

Sister Helen Ann Brake, 94, died on August 9, 2021, at St. Francis Convent, Little Falls, Minn.

Helen Ann was born on July 23, 1927, in the small town of Ward Springs, Minn., the third of 10 children born to the late Frank and Caroline (Feldewerd) Brake. She attended District 84 Ward Springs elementary school. Through her aunt, Sister Josephine Brake, she became acquainted with the Franciscan Sisters and entered the Franciscan Community on September 1, 1945. On August 12, 1946, she was accepted into the novitiate and was given the name Sister Mary Lucy. (She returned to her baptismal name, Helen Ann, in 1967.) She made her first profession of vows on August 12, 1948, and her final vows on August 12, 1951. She was a Franciscan Sister for 75 years.

Sister Helen Ann ministered as a housemother at St. Cloud Children's Home, and as a dormitory prefect at St. Francis High School in Little Falls. She spent summers at Camp Foley, a summer camp for teenagers in Pine River. She had a special gift for being with young people.

After receiving a degree in accounting, she served in the business office and as secretary at St. Francis Home in Breckenridge, St. Francis Convent and Crosier Seminary in Onamia. Lastly, she spent 21 years on the staff of the St. Francis Convent Development Office, where she faithfully wrote letters to donors--treating them as special friends--and enjoyed meeting people and spending time with them.

Sister Helen Ann appreciated the privilege of sharing life with her sisters, valuing simplicity and prayer and was always generous with her time helping others. She loved nature, especially caring for flowers. During the summertime she could often be found in the raspberry patch.

She was preceded in death by siblings: Marie Schmidt, Bernard, Irene Perish, Lawrence, Eleanor Froelich, John, Henry, Clara Rahn and Laura Zenzen. Survivors include her nieces and nephews and her Franciscan Community.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at St. Francis Convent on August 16, 2021, at 11 a.m. Friends may call at St. Francis Convent from 9 a.m. until the time of the funeral. Arrangements are by Emblom Brenny Funeral Service, Little Falls.

Donations to Franciscan Sisters ministries preferred.

Masks are required. Mass will be livestreamed on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCiyFvZ53PAfd1apBC88kEuQ