Deacon John Navolio

Class of 1998

Deacon John Navolio, 81, died Dec. 30. He was ordained in 1998 and served at St. Mary of the Lake Parish.

He served in the U.S. Army, graduated from Harrington College of Design and worked for the City of Chicago.

While at St. Mary of the Lake, he visited the sick at the hospital and nursing homes and led Bible study at the parish. Deacon Navolio suffered ill health and retired from ministry in 2005.

He is survived by his brother, Stephen Navolio, and sister, Mary Podmokly.

Sr. Magdalen Marie Buehler


School Sister of Notre Dame Magdalen Marie Buehler, 78, died Dec. 16 at Resurrection Medical Center.

Born in Chicago, she was a member of the School Sisters of Notre Dame for 58 years.

She served in Illinois and Rome as an elementary school teacher, program director, special education resource person, tutor, volunteer and staff member in the SSND Generalate in Rome. She offered prayer and presence at Marian Village in Homer Glen and at Resurrection Life Center.

She is survived by her brothers Bill Buehler, Martin Buehler and Thomas Buehler.

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Fr. Alan Syslo

Educator, social worker

Viatorian Father Alan Syslo, 84, died Jan. 7 at Addolorato Villa in Wheeling.

Born in Chicago, Father Syslo graduated from St. Philip High School. He earned a bachelor’s degree in accounting from Loyola University Chicago, a bachelor’s degree in sacred theology from the  Catholic University of America, a master of management from Illinois State University and a master of social work from Rutgers University in New Jersey.

He made his first vows in 1958 and was ordained a priest in 1966.

Father Syslo taught at St. Viator High School, Arlington Heights, and at Spalding Institute in Peoria, before serving as a parish priest, campus minister, chaplain and social worker in Louisiana, Nevada and California. He retired to the Viatorians Province Center in Arlington Heights in 2019.

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Fr. Thomas Griffith

Administrator, retreat leader

Divine Word Father Thomas Griffith, 80, a champion of Worldwide Marriage Encounter for three decades, died Jan. 10 in Techny.

Born in Chicago, he attended St. Rita of Cascia School and entered high school at Divine Word Seminary in East Troy, Wisconsin, in 1957. He professed his first vows in 1965 and was ordained to the priesthood at Techny in 1969.

He studied business as an undergraduate at DePaul University and earned an MBA from George Washington University in 1974.

He served in the leadership of the Society of the Divine Word’s Eastern Province and taught at the Divine Word Seminary in New Jersey before serving as business manager for Divine Word International at Techny from 1983 to 1993. He also served as provincial treasurer for the Chicago Province and the rector of the Divine Word community at Techny.

During his career in administration, he remained active in pastoral care and assisted at St. Norbert, Northbrook.

He became active in Worldwide Marriage Encounter while on the staff of Miramar Retreat Center in Duxbury, Massachusetts, which he joined in 2002.

Due to health reasons, Father Griffith moved back to Techny in 2019.

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Sr. Theresa Peck

Health care administrator

Daughter of Charity Theresa (Theresa Marian) Peck, 89, died Jan. 12 in Evansville, Indiana.

Born in Milwaukee, she entered the Daughters of Charity in St. Louis in 1956.

After initial formation and earning a bachelor’s degree in nursing from Marillac College, Sister Theresa served at hospitals in California and Texas. She then earned an MBA from George Washington University in Washington, D. C., before serving as assistant administrator at St. Joseph Health Center and Hospital in Chicago. She then was administrator of hospitals and health care agencies in Kentucky, Illinois and Indiana, before serving as president and vice president of Daughters of Charity National Health System in St. Louis, and then president and CEO of St. Joseph Health Centers and Hospital and Catholic Health Partners in Chicago.

Sister Theresa then served as a provincial councilor, provincial assistant and provincial treasurer and as administrator of the Mater Dei Campus in Evansville.

She is survived by her sister, Virginia Adamski.

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Sr. Frances Mary Fitzpatrick

Education leader

Adrian Dominican Sister Frances Mary (John Denise) Fitzpatrick, 88, died Jan. 16 in Adrian, Michigan.

Born in Chicago, she was in the 68th year of her religious life.

Sister Frances Mary ministered in education in Michigan, Florida and Illinois.

In the Archdiocese of Chicago, she was a school consultant (1988-2002), assistant superintendent (2002-2009) and resource consultant (2009-2012).

She retired to the Dominican Life Center in Adrian in 2021.

Sister Frances Mary is survived by her brothers, John Fitzpatrick and Thomas Fitzpatrick Jr.

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Sr. Martha Mary Rohde


Sinsinawa  Dominican Sister Martha Mary (Alfonsa) Rohde, 77, died Jan. 23 in Stuart, Florida.

Born in Chicago, Sister Martha Mary professed first vows in 1966.

She taught and was a principal in Illinois, Wisconsin and Florida. She also served as prioress of the motherhouse and assisted living prioress at the Sinsinawa Mound in Wisconsin.

In Chicago, she taught at St. Thomas More and Immaculate Conception.

She was principal of Hope Rural School, Indiantown, Florida, when she died.

She is survived by a brother, Edward Davis.