Sister Rose Marie Nutsch
When Sister Rose Marie entered St. Gertrude’s as a teenager, she was incredibly shy and somewhat frightened by her new life in the community of sisters. But over time, she grew in her social abilities and was able to discover a path that would lead her into education.
“At first I thought I would be a nurse; originally I was told I would be a domestic worker, but then Sister Aquinas said I would be good as a teacher,” recalls Sister Rose Marie. Teaching would ultimately provide a path for her to grow in self-expression. “I really enjoyed the kids. I liked to make up games and crafts for them. Teaching was a way to release my creativity.”
Most every teacher has a grade specialty and for Sister Rose Marie, it was second grade. She taught second grade at Sacred Heart in Boise, where she has taught for 30 years. She also has experience teaching first and third grades. She began teaching at Sacred Heart in Emmett, then taught at St. Joseph’s in Cottonwood, Sacred Heart in Boise, St. Mary’s in Boise, and finally returned to Sacred Heart in Boise.
As a candidate, she attended St. Gertrude’s Academy and then St. Gertude’s College. She was professed at the age of 19 on August 6, 1966. She earned her teaching certificate from University of Idaho.
The Benedictine Sisters have been present in her life from the very beginning. Rose Marie Nutsch was born at St. Valentine’s Hospital in Wendell that was run by the Sisters of St. Gertrude. She was educated by the sisters at their school, St. Paul’s, in Nampa. The daughter of devout Catholic parents, she was the middle child amidst nine siblings. “Our home was very structured. There was an emphasis on work. We raised cattle and hay. Mom had a big garden including the cleanest cornfield in the valley!”
“By 8th grade, we were encouraged to begin thinking about what we wanted to do,” recalls Sister Rose Marie. “My teacher, Sister Angelica, asked me, ‘Do you think you have a vocation?’ and I said yes. My parents were very supportive. Their faith was a big inspiration to me.”
Sister Rose Marie now lives at home at the monastery and is the house manager. “My life as a Benedictine has been life giving. It has given me the support to be prayerful and to live community life. In return I was able to minister to children through teaching. We are Benedictines and we are here to see to the needs of the people. We are always responding to this call in new ways.”