Sister Joachim Onuffer, SSJ, age 92, of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Northwestern Pennsylvania, died on May 5, 2018. Sister Joachim was born in Lewis Run, Pennsylvania, on June 25, 1925, the daughter of the late John and Anna (Hvizdak) Onuffer.
She entered the Sisters of St. Joseph from Our Mother of Perpetual Help Parish in Lewis Run, PA, on September 5, 1943 and professed her final vows on August 15, 1949. This year, 2018, marks the 75th anniversary of her religious life.
Sister Joachim attended Lewis Run Elementary School and graduated from St. Bernard High School in 1943. She earned a Bachelor’s degree in elementary education from Villa Maria College, Erie, in 1965 and she earned a Master’s degree in education from Duquesne University, Pittsburgh, in 1972. In addition, she attended many related conferences and workshops.
Sr. Joachim’s ministry assignments included teaching in Erie Diocesan elementary schools at Sacred Heart and Holy Rosary in Erie; St. Agatha in Meadville; and Holy Rosary in Johnsonburg. She served as house mother at St. Joseph’s Home for Children in Erie from 1949 to 1959 and served on the faculty of Spencer Hospital Nursing School, Meadville. From 1968 to 1975, she served on the faculty of Bradford Central High School in Bradford and was superior of St. Bernard Convent. For 25 years, she worked as curriculum librarian at Villa Maria College and Gannon University. Prior to her retirement, she worked as a seamstress at St. Mary’s at Asbury Ridge.