Sharing God’s Blessings: A values centered will


By Sr. Laura Goedken

Sr. Goedken

Marguerite Ritzinger was a longtime member of St. Mary Parish in Sigourney who died in 2005 in New Mexico where she spent her retirement years. She remained single all her life and had no children.
Her cousin was Father David Wilkening, presently the pastor in Fort Madison.  He said, “Marguerite had a strong work ethic and one way to help people was to educate them. Catholic organizations were important to her.”
In her will Marguerite gave one-half of the shares of her corporate stocks to the Diocese of Davenport. She specifically stated that one-half of the sale of these stocks was to be used for scholarships for students attending colleges and universities and the other half for seminary education and training of priests.
This gift from the estate of Marguerite Ritzinger has made a huge difference for the diocese. Her specific directions protected the assets and helped the diocese pay for educating its seminarians especially when resources were tight.
The diocese is now in its third year of awarding  scholarships to students from our diocese attending colleges and universities. In each of the recent two years, about 20 students have received assistance to fund their education.
Marguerite has expressed her values by the way she disposed of her assets at her death.  She did this through her will and her values live on long after her death. Most people include family members in their estate plans. Please think about remembering your parish in some way.
For further information, please contact Sister Laura Goedken, Director of Development, at (563) 888-4252 or

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