Bishop Loverde expresses great sadness at death of Benedictine sister in car accident

8 03 2010 Loverde Mosier Bishop Paul Loverde and the late Sr. Denise Mosier.

Bishop of Arlington Paul Loverde has expressed his “unimaginable sadness” at a car accident which killed one Benedictine sister and severely injured two others.

The three were headed to a retreat at St. Benedict Monastery in Bristow, Virginia when they were struck by an alleged drunk driver. Sister Denise Mosier, 66, was killed in the accident while Srs. Charlotte Lange, 75, and Connie Ruth Lupton, 70, suffered severe injuries.

“I immediately went to the hospital to be with the Benedictine Sisters of Virginia who had gathered there, including their prioress, Sister Cecilia Dwyer,” Bishop Loverde said on Monday. He reported he was able to visit with Sr. Charlotte. He added that he is praying “fervently” for the sisters’ healing, as is the entire diocese.

“Our faith gives us the knowledge that the Lord is with us in all things, even in this profound sorrow,” the bishop continued. “I pray that Sister Denise, a good and faithful servant of the Lord whom I knew from Saint Benedict’s Monastery and her work with our Diocesan Sisters’ Council, has gone to her eternal reward.”

He called the accident a reminder that men and women are “pilgrims on this earthly journey.” He also said the accident would have been avoidable if the other driver had not been driving while intoxicated.

“While we pray for the driver, let us also recommit ourselves to eliminating this absolutely unacceptable behavior,” he commented.

According to the Washington Times, the accused driver is a repeat offender and an undocumented immigrant who was awaiting deportation.

Sister Glenna Smith, spokeswoman for the Benedictine Sisters of Virginia, told the Catholic Herald that the critical status of the two injured sisters was “virtually unchanged” as of Tuesday morning.

A wake for Sr. Denise will be held on Thursday evening at the monastery chapel in Bristow, while her funeral Mass will be offered at the chapel on Friday at 11 a.m. 

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