On the morning of January 21, 2012, as Sister Death tenderly accompanied our Sr. Jean on her journey home to God, we, as her sisters, along with her family members, friends and caregivers, came to understand ever more fully the mystery of God’s action in the life of a very special person: God made Sr. Jean Lenz because God loves stories.
On May 20, 1930, Gertrude and Joseph Lenz welcomed their precious firstborn child into the world of Chicago’s Southside. Baptized into Christ on June 8, 1930 at St. Martin Church, Alice Eugenia Lenz began her life‐story of discipleship. A treasured daughter and a dearly beloved older sister to Ray, Jack and Trudy, Jean was recognized in her childhood and adolescence as a natural‐born leader, a person of memory and vision who always had a story to tell. She attended St. Martin School and went on to complete her secondary education with School Sisters of Notre Dame at the Academy of Our Lady (Longwood). In 1948, Jean began her under‐graduate studies at the College of St. Francis where she met the Joliet Franciscans. As a junior, she began to seriously consider a vocation to religious life. Inspired and encouraged by the College sisters who she came to know and love as teachers, mentors and friends, the words of Francis of Assisi began to echo in her own heart: “This is what I wish, this is what I seek, this is what I long to do with all my heart.”