Sister Catherine (Catherine of the Sacred Heart) Arnoldy (1909 – 2010)

On January 16, 2010 just a month after celebrating her 100th birthday, Sister Catherine, SNDdeN—a Sister of Notre Dame de Namur for 82 years—died peacefully.

Born on December 17, 1909 in Tipton, Kansas, Sister Catherine was one of Max and Katherine Arnoldy's 11 children. 

When the family relocated to Marysville, CA, Sister Catherine attended and graduated from Notre Dame High School. Catherine entered the Sisters of Notre Dame in Belmont, CA, and made her first vows in 1931. She later attended Holy Names College, San Jose State College, Lone Mountain College, and University of San Francisco where she received her M.A. in Education Administration.

Sister Catherine was known for her generous spirit, friendly and positive attitude, and exemplary classroom skills. She served as teacher and administrator in Notre Dame elementary and secondary schools in California and Oregon, including Alameda, Redwood City, Portland, Salinas, Sacramento, and 15 years in Chico.

Thousands of students and families were influenced by Sister Catherine, and many still comment on the profound difference she made in their lives. Former co-workers appreciated her calm, gentle ways.

Sister Catherine at her 100th birthday party.

Retiring from full-time ministry in 1976, Sister Catherine volunteered her services at Notre Dame High School in Belmont. For nearly 20 years, she was the cornerstone of the Attendance Office and Resource Center where she treated students with respect, fairness, personal care and interest.

She also enjoyed mastering the computer system.

A side benefit to working at Notre Dame was occasionally going to San Francisco 49er games with principal, Rita Gleason, and meeting her favorite player, Jerry Rice.

After truly retiring in 1999, Sister Catherine happily spent her last decade at Holy Names Convent in Los Gatos, CA, making new friends, staying in touch with former students, friends, and family, and praying every day for all of them.

Sister Catherine is lovingly remembered by many nieces and nephews, former students, and her Sisters of the Holy Names and Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur.