Sr. Benda served the poor


Sister Ludmilla Benda, RSM, who served in health care, parish ministry and was best known for her work serving the poor in the Diocese of Davenport, died Jan. 27.

Sr. Benda

She was the daughter of Agnes (Staricky) and John Benda of Toledo, Iowa. She entered the Sisters of Mercy, whom she served for 73 years. She received her master’s degree in hospital administration from George Washington University in Washington, D.C., and did her residency at Nassau County Hospital in Long Island, New York.

In the Diocese of Davenport, she served in nursing and health care administration at Mercy Hospital in Davenport. She then served at Our Lady of the River Parish in LeClaire and St. Anthony Parish in Davenport.

With money left to her by the estate of the late Father James Conroy, Sister Benda started Father Conroy’s Vineyard of Hope in Davenport in 2005. Meals were served until its closing in 2019.


A burial rite was held Feb. 1 at Holy Sepulchre Catholic Cemetery in Worth, Illinois. A Mass was said for Sister Benda at St. Bede’s Monastery. St. Anthony Parish in Davenport will remember Sister Benda at all weekend Masses Feb. 13-14. Memorials may be sent to the Sisters of Mercy, 3659 W. 99th St. Chicago, IL 60655.

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