Sister Donna Schmitt (Mary Angelita), CHM, a former educator in the Diocese of Davenport, died Oct. 25 at Bishop Drumm Care Center in Johnston. She was 90.
She was born Jan. 11, 1929, in Des Moines to Paul and Edna (Seuferer) Schmitt. She entered the Congregation of the Humility of Mary in 1947, professing vows in 1950.
Sister Schmitt’s earned an AA in elementary education from Ottumwa Heights College in Ottumwa; a BA in English/elementary education from Marycrest College in Davenport; and an MST in science teaching from Wisconsin State University in Superior. She also took classes at Louisiana State University and A&M College in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.
Sister Schmitt taught and was principal in elementary schools in Minnesota and Iowa for 36 years with more than 10 years at St. Theresa School in Des Moines. She also served at these schools in Iowa: Melrose Public, St. Patrick and St. Mary in Ottumwa, Sacred Heart in West Des Moines, St. Mary in Oskaloosa and St. Henry in Marshalltown.
In 1978 she received the National Catholic Education Association Presidential Award for outstanding service to Catholic education. Her other ministries included assistant housing coordinator and apartment manager for Anawim Housing, Inc. in Des Moines; director of Humility of Mary Center; and coordinator of the volunteer program. She served on many community committees.
Sister Schmitt loved to explore spiritual teachings and offer help to less privileged persons. She spent years volunteering at Iowa Correctional Institution for Women in Mitchellville. In Des Moines, she displayed patience and kindness as she helped PATH clients with mental health issues find value in work experiences. As a member of the New Hope experimental community, she prepared meals on short notice and had a gift for hospitality.
In 2013 she retired to Humility of Mary Center until health concerns brought her to Bishop Drumm Care Center in 2017.
Her funeral was held Nov. 2 in the Magnificat Chapel at the Humility of Mary Center in Davenport. Burial was at Mt. Calvary in Davenport.
Memorials may be made to the Congregation of the Humility of Mary.