Skip to content

Sister Bertha (Mary Austin) Fischer

 Adorers of the Blood of Christ1 Comment

Sister Bertha (Mary Austin) Fischer, ASC, died Saturday, Sept. 1, 2018, in St. Louis. She was 83 years old and had been a professed member of the Adorers of the Blood of Christ for 61 years.

Sister Bertha was the fifth of 12 children of Joseph, Sr. and Elizabeth (Tebbe) Fischer from St. Rose, Illinois.

She received her undergraduate and graduate degrees in French, minoring in other languages, which kick-started a lifelong interest and ministry in languages.

She taught French at St. Pius X High School in Festus, Missouri (1960-73); at Mater Dei High School in Breese, Illinois (1973-74); and at Assumption High School in East St. Louis, Illinois (1974-84).

She began Italian studies in 1985 in Rome, in preparation for her work as a translator for English-speaking Adorers. She served in Rome as a member of the General Council or Leadership Team for the entire congregation from 1987 to 1991. Interrupted by a several-month stay with Adorers in La Paz, Bolivia, and a four-month sabbatical, she returned to Rome to serve as a translator from 1992 to 1996, and again from 1999 to 2006. Altogether, she was in Rome for 17 years.

Sister Bertha, on the right, ice skates in Festus, Missouri.

Sister Bertha also loved music, and organized liturgical music, and sang in the choir at the Ruma Center, the motherhouse in Ruma, Illinois. She also sang with the St. Louis Symphony Chorus.

Sister Bertha was preceded in death by her parents, her brothers Charles and John, sister-in-law Donna Fischer, brothers-in-law Clarence Schumacher and Paul Fiedler, and aunts in the ASC community, Sister Priscilla Fischer and Sister Veronica Tebbe.

She is survived by her sisters Lidwina Schumacher, Mary (Stanley) Goestenkors, Helen Fiedler, Geraldine (Jairo) Mejia, Agnes (David) Rasure, Irma (John) Gapter, Angela (Donald) Karban, and brothers Joseph, Jr. (Mary Lou) Fischer, Robert Fischer, nieces, nephews and members of the ASC community.

She is buried in the Ruma Convent cemetery.

1 thought on “Sister Bertha (Mary Austin) Fischer”

  1. Avatar

    Please give Sr. Mary Austin’s Adorers family and family of origin my sincerest condolences. I majored in French because of her, went to France on a Rotary
    scholarship and taught French in Catholic schools for 10 years. I visited with
    Sr Mary Austin at our 1966 reunion at St. Pius X High School in Festus where we
    too skated with her and Sr. Gabrielle on the pond behind the school. I will always
    remember her fondly for her loving kindness toward my awkward high school self.
    And how very clever of her to learn Italian and represent the sisters in Rome. I am sure she skates with the angels while Our Lord smiles from the shoreline.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *