Sister Eileen Brown (Sr. Marian Paula), 85, died at her home in Gladstone, Sept. 6 after a yearlong battle with lung cancer. She was a vowed member of the Sisters of the Holy Names for 65 years. There was a funeral in the Holy Names Sisters Provincial House Chapel.
Sister Eileen was the first of Jack and Anne Farley Brown’s nine children. She attended St. Mary’s Academy her junior and senior years of high school. Although she came late to SMA, she entered into activities there with enthusiasm.
She brought the same zest to the Holy Names community, which she entered in 1949, making vows in 1951, and beginning a life of service, both as a teacher and administrator. Eileen taught history and religion, and was particularly admired and appreciated for her skills as coach of various teams. She taught at Holy Names Academy in Spokane, St. Mary’s Academy in Portland, and Sacred Heart Academy in Salem, where she served as vice-principal before her nine years as principal. Simultaneously she served as province supervisor of secondary schools in Oregon. In 1974 she went to Marylhurst College taking on the position of vice-president and director of programs. She retained her interest and regard for Marylhurst for the rest of her life, serving on the board almost until her death. She earned her second master’s degree in future studies from the University of Houston in Texas.
Then came Alaska. She started as superintendent of Catholic Schools in the Diocese of Fairbanks, moved on to serve as chancellor of that diocese. She worked on the diocesan planning force, and also learned to love the country, the people, and the joy of salmon fishing. However, a call from the Oregon Province brought her back to Marylhurst and her new responsibilities as provincial superior of the Oregon province.
Besides serving the sisters, she also was instrumental in the formation and growth of Mary’s Woods. Eileen was intrepid—she went from door to door visiting the neighbors and assuring them that the new venture would be a good for everyone.
Sister Eileen tackled every job with vigor and faith. At age 84 she travelled to Vietnam on a summer program to teach Vietnamese sisters how to teach. She served on boards, won awards, volunteered on committees for many years, always with ideas and enthusiasm.
Sister Eileen is survived by her sister Sister Sally Brown, brothers Fr. Bruce Brown, Eugene Brown, Richard Brown, nieces and nephews, friend and caregiver, Mary Jo Radosevich, and the members of her religious community. Remembrances may be made to the Sisters of the Holy Names Retirement Fund, P.O. Box 411, Marylhurst, OR 97036.