Sister Barbara Bell, OP, died Jan. 17, 2022, at St. Dominic Villa, Hazel Green, Wis. Her religious name was Sister Walthier. Natural burial took place Jan. 19 in the Motherhouse Cemetery, Sinsinawa, Wis. The funeral Mass was held at the Dominican motherhouse, Sinsinawa, Jan. 22.
Sister Barbara made her first profession as a Dominican Sister of Sinsinawa Aug. 5, 1951, and her perpetual profession Aug. 5, 1954. She taught for 23 years and served as director of religious education for 13 years. Sister Barbara worked as a bookkeeper for 12 years, pastoral administrator of parishes for five years and volunteer prayer leader for five years. She was a steady, gentle, faith-filled presence who lived her life with grace, hospitality and integrity. She served in Minnesota, Indiana, South Dakota, Wisconsin, the District of Columbia, Maryland, Illinois and Montana.
Sister Barbara served at St. Anne School and Parish, Wausau, as teacher, 1964-1969, and volunteer prayer leader, 2008-2014.
Sister Barbara was born Sept. 5, 1931, in Appleton, Wis., the daughter of Walter and Ruth (Demerath) Bell. Her parents and two sisters, Betty Bell and Ruth Schimke, preceded her in death. She is survived by nieces, nephews and her Dominican Sisters with whom she shared 70 years of religious life.
Memorials may be made to the Sinsinawa Dominicans, 585 County Road Z, Sinsinawa, WI, 53824-9701 or at www.sinsinawa.org/donate online.
Repeat broadcasts of the wake and funeral for Sister Barbara are available online at www.sinsinawa.org/live. Click on the “on demand” tab.