Deacon Gerald Zych, 78, died Nov. 10.
He was ordained in 1987 and served at St. Giles Parish, Oak Park.
In the parish, Deacon Zych Gerry presided over baptisms and pet blessings, Ash Wednesday prayer services and Lenten Stations of the Cross.
He and his wife of 52 years, Madonna, were instrumental in liturgical celebrations for the parish’s annual marriage anniversary Masses and observances of Memorial Day, the Fourth of July and Labor Day, as well as hospitality Sundays.
Deacon Zych is survived by his wife; his children, George and Geralanne; and two grandchildren.
Benedictine Sister Victoria (Lorenzia) Marconi, 97, died Nov. 5 at St. Scholastica Monastery.
Sister Victoria was born in Pennsylvania and entered the Benedictine Sisters of Elk County at St. Joseph Monastery in 1944. She professed first vows in 1945 and perpetual vows in 1948. The rite of consecration of virgins was reintroduced in the time of Pope Pius XII around 1950, and Sister Victoria engaged in this rite on the 13th anniversary of her vows.
Her 69 years of active ministry were primarily in teaching first graders in the Diocese of Erie, Pennsylvania. Sister corresponded with many of them until the time of her unexpected death.
In 2013, when the Benedictine community at St. Joseph Monastery could no longer remain independent, Sister Victoria asked to transfer to the Benedictine Sisters of Chicago and began her first year of residence in St. Joseph Court, the infirmary at St. Scholastica Monastery. The transfer of her vows was finalized in 2014 and she celebrated both her 70th and 75th jubilees in Chicago.
Columban Father Charles Joseph O’Rourke, 90, died Nov. 6 in Papillion, Nebraska.
Born in Iowa, he joined the Columban Fathers as a high school student and was ordained at St. Columban’s Major Seminary in Massachusetts in 1957. From 1958 until 1985, he was mostly on mission in South Korea. Upon returning to the United States, he pastored Korean Catholic communities in Chicago, Los Angeles and Omaha. After a transfer to the Columban headquarters in Bellevue, Nebraska, he continued ministry to the Korean Catholics of the area and to contemplative prayer groups.
He is survived by two of his sisters, Rita Gubbels and Sister Jeanne O’Rourke, RSM, of Omaha, and many nieces and nephews.
Dominican Sister Maria del Rey Hunt, 91, died Nov. 9 in Hazel Green, Wisconsin.
Sister Maria del Rey made her first profession in 1960 with the Pious Union of the Dominican Mission Sisters. They disbanded in 1967, and she transferred her vows to the Dominican Sisters of Kenosha, Wisconsin, and in 1968 transferred her vows to the Dominican Sisters of Sinsinawa. Sister Maria del Rey made her perpetual profession as a Dominican Sister of Sinsinawa in 1969. She then ministered as a social worker, parish worker, chaplain for 20 years and transportation driver for one year. Sister Maria del Rey served in Illinois, Colorado, Nebraska, California, Texas and Wisconsin.
In the Archdiocese of Chicago, Sister Maria del Rey served as a psychiatric social worker at two Pilsen mental health clinics (now Pilsen Wellness Center) (1968-1971), and as a driver at Rosary College (now Dominican University), River Forest (1985-1986).
She is survived by a sister, Mary DeLuca.