Sister Mary David Gruden, OSB, 85, of St. Scholastica Monastery, died Wednesday, May 23, 2007, at the Monastery. She entered the Duluth Benedictines on September 1, 1940, and professed monastic vows in 1942. She was in her 65th year of monastic profession.
Sister Mary David was born December 25, 1921, in Gilbert, Minnesota, and received her high school education at Stanbrook Hall, Duluth. She received a Bachelor of Science degree from The College of St. Scholastica and a Masters in Hospital Administration from Xavier University, Cincinnati, Ohio. In 1943 Sister Mary David taught at Our Lady of Sacred Heart in Cloquet, Minnesota. Beginning in 1944 she became a student in nurses’ training at St. Mary’s Hospital, Duluth, Minnesota. Later, she served in Minnesota at St. Joseph’s Hospital, Brainerd; Miners’ Hospital, Crosby; Hibbing General Hospital, Hibbing; as well as at St. Joseph’s Hospital, Rice Lake, Wisconsin. In 1968 she returned to Duluth where she was the administrative assistant in the Education Office and also worked in the Business Office at The College of St. Scholastica. Later she worked in the Monastery’s Business Office and tutored mathematics students in the Enrichment Center at St. Scholastica Monastery. Her most recent assignment was as bookkeeper for the Monastery Books and Gifts shop.
Sister Mary David shared her many talents with the community of St. Scholastica Monastery. Those who worked with her attest to the fact that while, as a nurse, she was efficient, but she never lost her compassionate touch. Others found her an excellent hospital administrator. Her side interests were wide and varied. In her early years she was very athletic and an excellent ballplayer. She also became an accomplished musician and could play any musical instrument, having special talent for the violin. Sister Mary David also had a beautiful alto voice. She was always an avid reader, loved word games and working in the garden. Her abilities even extended to mechanical things, so she was often called on to “fix” things. During her last serious illness, she retained an affinity for fried chicken wings and potica, and she never lost her sense of humor or her gift for comforting others.
Sister Mary David was preceded in death by her parents, Frank and Frances (Shepel), her brother Frank and her twin sister, Anne Marie Schmitt. She is survived by a nephew, cousins, and the Sisters of St. Scholastica Monastery.
A wake service was held Friday, May 25, 2007, at 7 p.m. in Our Lady Queen of Peace Chapel, St. Scholastica Monastery, with visitation following until 9 p.m. The Mass of Christian Burial was Saturday, May 26, 2007, at 10:30 a.m. with Father Brian Schultz presiding. Burial was in Gethsemane Cemetery.
- Our Lady of Sacred Heart, Cloquet, MN
- Administrative Assistant in Education Office, The College of St. Scholastica, Duluth, MN
- Tutor of mathematics, Enrichment Center at St. Scholastica Monastery, Duluth, MN
- Business Office, The College of St. Scholastica, Duluth, MN
- Business Office, St. Scholastica Monastery, Duluth, MN
- Bookkeeper, St. Scholastica Monastery Books and Gift Shop
- St. Mary’s Hospital, Duluth, MN
- St. Joseph’s Hospital, Brainerd, MN
- Miners’ Hospital, Crosby, MN
- Hibbing General Hospital, Hibbing, MN
- St. Joseph’s Hospital, Rice Lake, WI