+Sister Agnes Alich, OSB

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+Sister Agnes Alich, OSB

Sister Agnes AlichSister Agnes Alich, age 86, was called home by God on Friday, June 15, 2018, in Benet Hall, in her 65th year of monastic profession. May she rejoice forever in the fullness of life with God, all the angels and saints, her family members, and Sisters of her Community.

A wake service/morning prayer with visitation will be held from 9:30 to 10:45 a.m. followed by the Mass of Christian Burial at 11:00 a.m. on Wednesday, June 27, 2018, at Our Lady Queen of Peace Chapel in St. Scholastica Monastery. The presider will be Father Brian Schultz.  Sister Agnes will be buried in Gethsemane Cemetery at St. Scholastica Monastery.  Funeral arrangements are by Dougherty Funeral Home.  Memorials to St. Scholastica Monastery are preferred.

Sister Agnes Alich (formerly Sr. Mary Andrew), 86, died at St. Scholastica Monastery in Duluth on Friday, June 15, 2018.  Agnes Amelia Alich was born on a farm near Border, Minnesota on June 10, 1932, one of seven children of John Alich and Delvina (St. Lawrence) Alich.  After attending school in Border and graduating from Indus High School, Agnes enrolled in The College of St. Scholastica in 1950 to study chemistry, and a year later joined the Benedictine Sisters of St. Scholastica Monastery, making her First Monastic Profession in 1953 and her Perpetual Profession in 1956.  She taught at St. Francis School in Brainerd, Cathedral Junior High in Duluth, and Gerard High School in Phoenix, AZ.  In 1960 she received her B.S. degree and in 1961 her M.S. degree in inorganic chemistry from Marquette University in Milwaukee. Then she began her long career of teaching chemistry at The College of St. Scholastica, broken only by three years of further study at Northwestern University where she received her doctoral degree in 1972.

The following years at St. Scholastica were extraordinarily productive.  In addition to serving as Chair of the Chemistry Department for 18 years, Sister Agnes was intent on continuing research, was the recipient of many awards and honors, procured numerous grants for and mentored 80 student research projects, published 29 papers and gave over 49 presentations, served on the IRC Consortium to promote Native American student opportunities, wrote and edited papers for the EPA, and developed courses in Environmental Chemistry and Global Sustainability, to mention only a few of her teaching and professional accomplishments. On her retirement in 2009, she was awarded Emeritus status by the College.

Sister Agnes was actively involved in her religious community’s life and liturgy, serving on many committees, spearheading many projects, and serving as a Board member for three of its hospitals and two facilities of the Benedictine Health System.  She also sang as an alto with the Duluth Symphony for 30 years.

Sister Agnes was preceded in death by her parents, her brother George and four sisters: Marianne Christensen, Clara Ley, Sylvia Engbretson and Margaret Koranda.  She is survived by her brother John (Jeanine) Alich, many nieces and nephews, her Benedictine Sisters, colleagues and many friends.











Posted in Happenings, ObituariesTagged , ,


  1. I missed Sr Agnes Alich obit and just wanted to recognize that Sr Agnes was my chemistry advisor – graduated 1980. She was one of the hardest professors I had, but expected detail and excellence and it served me well in my career and family. I think of her and my CSS years every Christmas. Thank you to whomever sent me a card to let me know I missed her passing in 2018.

    Sheri Haines Peterson Class of 1980.

  2. Ditto all of the above. She mentored us especially by encouraging us in leadership work as lab and research assistants. The Benedictine ethic of pray and work, especially work, lived strongly in her. Eternal rest grant unto her oh Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon her!
    Kathryn (Pfahl) Vogel, Class of 1981

  3. I just tonight discovered this 2018 obituary for Sr Agnes. We were fellow chemistry grad students at Northwestern U between 1969 & 1972. She was one of a number of individuals throughout my life to whom I am thankful to have had as guides in my own ongoing faith journey. When we met I had been born & raised as a Southern Baptist from North Carolina & was rather ignorant Catholicism. For one, I discovered that nuns were just as human as the rest of us mortals, even if their spiritual lives are ordered by a distinct & orderly discipline. During those years in Evanston my own journey led me to become an active parishioner in the local Episcopal Church.

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