Sister Marie Michelle Hackett celebrates jubilee

Sister Marie Michelle was raised in Chicago. Her parents were Walter “Red” and Olga Hackett and her siblings were Pat and Joan. Her parents named her Norene Mary. She made her profession of vows on June 19, 1964, and a few weeks later she was in the third-grade classroom at Little Flower School, Springfield, Ill., where she taught for four years. She then taught first and third grade at St. Michael School, Duluth, Minn., 1968-1972, and then first and second grades at St. Thomas School, Philo, Ill., 1973-1977. She then taught first grade at Sacred Heart School, San Diego, Calif., 1977-1979, before relocating to Springfield and teaching first grade at St. Agnes School, 1979-1984, where her primary school ministry drew to a close.

She was both the junior high school teacher and principal at St. Thomas School, Newton, Ill., 1984-1991, and after leaving there began a legendary mission at St. Edward School, Chicago, where she ministered as vice principle and principal for 23 years. After a sabbatical, in 2019 she was elected to the leadership team for the Dominican Sisters of Springfield and serves in that role until mid-June 2024.

As Sister Marie Michelle reflected on her anniversary of profession she drew on her childhood experience of growing up with an Orthodox Jewish family. “The word jubilee means to sing joyfully to announce a great happening,” she said. “It originated in Judaism where a ram’s horn was blown to announce the special occasion. As child, I heard the joyful sound of the ram’s horn. As I celebrate this 60th jubilee of consecrated life, I am reminded of what this joyful occasion means.

“I have been blessed by the friendship of my Dominican Sisters and many religious around the world, the families and students I encountered at each mission and the opportunity to experience Christ in hidden and unexpected places.”

She continued “I reflect on life and the abundance of God’s blessings. Would I do it again if I had the choice? Yes! Indeed, without hesitation.”

Miracle on the Lake

Ten sisters who missioned at Holy Rosary and St. Michael’s schools in Duluth embarked for an overnight holiday to an island lake home owned by a friend. They were ferried to the island getaway on Friday with plans to return the following afternoon, Saturday, October 7, the Feast of the Holy Rosary.

Four of the sisters embarked on the boat for the brief return trip to the mainland, while the other six waited on the island. Soon the waves overwhelmed and capsized the boat, and the sisters and the boat operator were in grave danger in the cold waters. Everyone survived the accident.  Sister Marie Michelle Hackett, who is celebrating her 60th jubilee this year, along with Sister Margaret Grueter recount the events of the day in Miracle on the Lake: A F.L.O.W.cast special for Catholic Sister Week.

2 thoughts on “Sister Marie Michelle Hackett celebrates jubilee”

  1. Jennifer Hegener

    So grateful for Sister Marie Michelle and he time at St. Edward. Congratulations on 6 decades of selfless service and leadership. God bless her!

  2. Barbara Carabio

    It was an honor and joy to have Sr.Marie Michelle for a principal as a student, and then as a teacher. I wouldn’t be where I am today without her wisdom and guidance.

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