Sister Mary Miguel Gassmann served decades in health care

Sister of Mercy Mary Miguel Gassmann had a long life, living to 100; a long ministry in health care, nearly 65 years; and a long religious life, serving 83 years.

She died Nov. 3 in Omaha. Funeral services are on hold due to the pandemic.

Sister Miguel served in health care for about seven decades, mostly in administration, at hospitals in North Dakota, Colorado, Iowa, Missouri, and in Omaha.

According to a written tribute by the Sisters of Mercy, Sister Miguel had said: “I feel blessed that I have been able to be involved in the healing ministry, whether it was through nursing patients, hospital administration, pushing a wheelchair, or simply providing a gentle touch for someone who is hurting.”

She was born in Valley City, North Dakota, and entered the Sisters of Mercy in Council Bluffs, Iowa, in 1937. She professed temporary vows in 1940 and perpetual vows in 1943.

Sister Miguel earned a certificate in nursing from the former St. Catherine Hospital in Omaha in 1943,  a bachelor’s degree in nursing from College of Saint Mary in Omaha in 1945 and a master’s degree in hospital administration from St. Louis University in 1964.

Her service in the Omaha area included work as a floor supervisor and later an administrator at St. Catherine, an administrator at Mercy Hospital in Council Bluffs from 1965 to 1979, and a patient representative at what is now CHI Health Creighton University Medical Center-Bergan Mercy from 1983 to 1991.

In 1992 Sister Miguel became part of Bergan Mercy’s mission services staff and helped launch its Porch Ministry, the beginnings of in-home healthcare.

She also served on boards for four hospitals in Iowa, Nebraska and Missouri.

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