Cleveland Jubilarians – 2021 – Congregation of the Sisters of St. Joseph

Cleveland Jubilarians – 2021

Sister Juanita Shealey, CSJ

(Sister Nativa)

70 years

Sister Juanita entered religious life on February 2, 1951, from Our Lady of the Blessed Sacrament in Cleveland, where she also attended elementary school. After graduating from St. Edward High School in 1950, she went on to earn a B.S. in Education from St. John College in 1960, and a M.A. in Guidance & Counseling from Kent State University in 1976.

During the summer of 1974, Sister Juanita attended the University of Ibadan in Nigeria, Africa, where she earned a certification in African art, music and history. Upon returning to the U.S., her first teaching assignment came in 1953 at St. Ignatius in Cleveland, where she taught until 1966. She then taught for two years at St. Agnes in Cleveland. From 1968-1974, Sister Juanita served as both a teacher and principal at St. Aloysius in Cleveland. In 1974, she transitioned to higher education, serving as Professor of Speech at Case Western Reserve University, and as Campus Minister and philosophy professor at Cuyahoga Community College. From 1978-1980, she served as a speech instructor at Ohio Bell in downtown Cleveland. From 1981-1983, Sister served the U.S. Department of Commerce as Director of Advocacy. She then went on to serve as a speech and psychology instructor at Virginia Marti College from 1984-1988. From 1988-2001, Sister Juanita served as Executive Director of the Catholic Interracial Commission. During this time, she also served as Small Business Coordinator for the Diocese of Cleveland (1996-1998).

For over 25 years, Sister hosted or did the sign on/off meditation on local television or radio stations, including hosting “God’s Saving Word”, a call-in program on WERE 1490 am. She is currently active with the Congregation’s Anti-Racism Committee and in prayer ministry at St. Joseph Center where she resides.

Sister Patricia Adams, CSJ

(Sister Maureen Therese)

60 years

Sister Pat entered religious life on September 4, 1960, from St. Bernadette Parish in Westlake. She attended St. Patrick grade school (West Park) and graduated from St. Joseph Academy (Cleveland) in 1960. She went on to earn her Bachelor of Science in Education from St. John College in 1965, a Master of Science in Education, also, from St. John College in 1972, and later a Certificate of Advanced Studies in Religious Education from John Carroll University in 1983. She is a Certified Pastoral Minister in the Diocese of Cleveland and completed a Chaplain residency at the Cleveland Clinic. In 1998 she earned her chaplaincy certification from the National Association of Catholic Chaplains.

Sister Pat taught first/second grades at St. Francis de Sales School, Akron, from 1965-1971. She then became principal of St. Joseph School. Strongsville, where she served until 1978. She then accepted the position of principal of St. Mary School, Berea. In 1982 Sister Pat answered a call to become a member of the Pastoral Team at Church of the Resurrection in Solon where she served for 15 years.

In 1998, she became a Chaplain for Harbor Light Hospice in Cleveland and later that year she transitioned to New Life Hospice in Elyria and Lorain where she served as Chaplain for 15 years. She ministered to patients who were in the hospice center or at home, and to their families. After Sister Pat retired, she volunteered at Arden Courts and Malachi House. She hopes to be able to continue in this ministry after the pandemic.

Sister Susan Imburgia, CSJ

(Sister Mary Karen)

60 years

Sister Susan Imburgia entered religious life on September 4, 1960, from St. Angela Merici Parish in Fairview Park. She attended St. Charles School (Parma) and St. Joseph Academy (Cleveland), graduating in 1960. She went on to earn her B.S. in Education from St. John College in 1965, and later a M.S.E., with a concentration in Religious Education, also from St. John College in 1972. Her teaching assignments began in 1965 and included St. Peter in Akron, where she taught first grade for one year, St. Wenceslas (Maple Hts.) from 1966-68, Annunciation (Cleveland) until 1973, and St. Agnes (Elyria) until 1975.

Sister Susan then began serving as Pastoral Minister at St. Colman Parish (Cleveland), where she worked with the preschool and religious education programs until 1978. Later that year, she returned to teaching at St. Mary in Berea, where she taught kindergarten until 1980. Sister Susan then answered a call to serve as Catechist Formation Consultant for the Diocese of Cleveland, where she worked for seven years. In 1987, she became Director of Religious Education at St. Barnabas in Northfield for six years, then held the same position at St. Peter in Lorain until 1999. That year, she transitioned to pastoral ministry at St. Basil Parish in Brecksville, where she served as Pastoral Associate for nine years.

In 2009, Sister Susan became Co-Coordinator of the Cleveland CSJ Associates until her retirement in 2019. She continues to serve by facilitating online faith formation courses for the University of Dayton, and is active in several CSJ committees with the hopes of expanding her volunteer activities following the pandemic.

Sister Rita Petruziello, CSJ

(Sister Michael Francis)

60 years

Sister Rita Petruziello entered religious life on February 2, 1961. She attended St. Thomas Aquinas grade school (Cleveland) and St. Joseph Academy high school (Cleveland), from where she graduated in 1958. She went on to earn her B.S. in Education from St. John College in 1965 and a Master of Science in Education, also from St. John College, in 1972.

Her first teaching job came in 1965 at St. Peter in Akron, where she taught seventh grade until 1966. She then went on to teach 8th grade at both St. Columbkille (Parma) until 1969, and Annunciation (Cleveland) until 1971. From 1971 – 1972, Sister Rita served as Principal at St. Anthony of Padua in Parma, and from 1972 – 1977, she served as both principal and teacher at St. Thomas Aquinas in Cleveland. In 1978, she became Campus Minister at Kent State University, where she served until 1984. That year, Sister Rita came home to serve on the Congregation of St. Joseph Leadership Team until 1989.

After serving on the Leadership Team, Rita spent a year in training in the Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE) for hospital chaplaincy. She then answered a call to serve as Director of Pastoral Care at St. Vincent Charity Hospital, where she served from 1990 to 2004. That year, Sister Rita was named Executive Director of River’s Edge, one of the Congregation’s spirituality centers in Cleveland, where she served until her retirement in 2015. In 2016, Sister Rita founded Circle the City With Love, a movement participated in by thousands all over the world to stand in silent witness for love and peace, and which still continues today. Currently, Sister Rita resides at St. Joseph Center in Cleveland where she is active in justice initiatives including anti-racism efforts.

Sister Mary Schrader, CSJ

(Sister Catherine May)

60 Years

Sister Mary entered religious life on September 4, 1960, from St. Joseph Parish in Canton. She attended St. Joseph grade school (Canton) and St. Joseph Academy (Cleveland), from which she graduated in 1961. She went on to earn her B.S. in Education from St. John College in 1966 and a Master of Science in British and American Literature from John Carroll University in 1975. Her first teaching job came in 1966 at St. Vincent de Paul in Elyria, where she taught fourth grade until 1968. She then went on to Nazareth Academy in Parma Hts., where she taught English and Theology from 1968-1975.

Sister Mary then answered a call to serve in Alaska, and in 1978, she moved and began teaching and ministering to the people of Fairbanks. She taught in several area schools and also at Hooper Bay/St. Therese Mission. In 1993, Sister moved home and became Co-Manager of WellSpring Bookstore in Cleveland. She then worked in the communications and development office in the Congregation’s administration until 1998, and in 1999 was voted into leadership, where she served on the Leadership Team in Cleveland until 2007.

Following her term in leadership, Sister Mary worked in adult education at Voss Industries, as a tutor at West Park Catholic Academy, and as staff providing tutorial support at St. Augustine Parish Learning Center. She currently resides at Arden Courts, a memory Care facility in Westlake, where she shares her many gifts of care and compassion with the residents.


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