Sister Marguerite Bartz, 64, was found dead on Sunday, Nov. 1 in St. Berard's Convent in Navajo, New Mexico by a colleague after she failed to show up for Mass that morning. Her death is being investigated as a murder by the FBI.
FBI officials believe that sometime between Saturday evening and Sunday morning, Sister Bartz was murdered.
Sister Bartz's beige colored Honda CR-V was reported missing but has since been found. Authorities have asked for any information relating to the investigation and have also stated that the subject(s) involved should be considered armed and dangerous.
The Diocese of Gallup, where the religious sister served, is not offering comment at this time as circumstances surrounding Sister Marguerite's death are still under investigation by the FBI.
Born in Plymouth, Massachusetts in 1945, Sister Marguerite entered the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament in 1966 and professed her final vows in 1974. In addition to completing a bachelor of arts degree from Xavier University in New Orleans, Sr. Bartz also held a master's degree in Religious Education from Loyola University. Sister Marguerite served in numerous locations throughout her 40 plus years in the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament.
According to the Diocese of Gallup, Sister Marguerite was “known to be a woman always passionate for justice and peace – and the life she lived would tell us that she would respond to this incident with a spirit of forgiveness towards whoever is responsible for these acts.”
Funeral plans are still being determined and have not yet been announced.