Sister Rose Marie Penouilh, O. Carm., a Sister of Mount Carmel, died Saturday, August 25, 2018 at Our Lady of Wisdom Healthcare Center. She was 88 years old and in the 71st year of her religious profession.
Sister Rose Marie born Betty Nell on Nov. 21, 1929 in New Orleans, LA was the first of five children born to the late Percy Antoine Penouilh of Matthews, LA and Arada Ruth Lea of Kentwood, LA. She entered the Congregation of Our Lady of Mount Carmel on Sept. 4, 1944 and received the habit of the Sisters of Mount Carmel on Aug. 2, 1945. On Aug. 4, 1947, she made her first profession, and pronounced perpetual vows Aug. 2, 1951. She celebrated her 70th Jubiliee in 2017.
Sister Rose Marie attended Jefferson Davis Elementary and Mount Carmel Academy, New Orleans, LA. She received her Bachelor of Science degree in Elementary Education from Loyola University, New Orleans, LA and a Master of Education in Administration and Supervision in 1955. She pursued post graduate work in science, physics, chemistry, math, guidance, library science and computers.
Devoting 38 years to teaching in Catholic schools in Louisiana, Sister Rose Marie has taught at St. Dominic, New Orleans; Our Lady of Prompt Succor, Westwego, St. Joseph the Worker, Marrero; and E.D. White, Thibodaux. In addition to teaching she served as principal at St. Joseph the Worker, Marrero; Mount Carmel, New Iberia; and Vermillion Catholic High School, Abbeville, LA. She taught physics at Loyola University in 1965, was Principal of the Year in the Diocese of Lafayette in 1969 and received the 1990 Volunteer of the Year in St. Tammany Parish for her work with the Slidell Unit Boys Club. In 2012 she was honored with the Mount Carmel Academy Alumna of the Year Award.
Sister Rose Marie served the congregation as Assistant General from 1973-1977, Congregation Secretary from 1985-1993, Congregation President from 1993-2001, and as Professional Development Coordinator at Mount Carmel Academy, New Orleans, LA from 2001-2002. Since 2002 Sister Rose Marie served as an Administrative Assistant at Mount Carmel Academy and resided at the Motherhouse, New Orleans, LA.
Sister Rose was preceded in death by her parents, three sisters: Ruth Penouilh, Barbara Davis, and Elaine Penouilh, and one brother: Percy “Sonny” Penouilh, Jr. She is survived by her brother-in-law Sidney Davis, from Alabama, and by nieces and nephews.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at St. Pius X, 6666 Spanish Fort Blvd, New Orleans, LA on Wednesday, August 29. Visitation will be held from 11:00 a.m.-12:30 p.m. with Mass at 12:30 p.m. A reception will follow Mass at the Mount Carmel Academy Louviere Dining Room, 7027 Milne Blvd, New Orleans, LA. Sister will be interred in St. Louis No. 3 Cemetery. Arrangements have been entrusted to Schoen & Sons Funeral Home, New Orleans, LA.