Theresa (Bonaventure) Tenbusch, IHM

Sister Theresa Tenbusch, IHM, died Sunday, Aug. 9, 2020, at IHM Senior Living Community. She was 89.

Theresa Tenbusch was born Oct. 27, 1930, to Frederick and Honorah (Gill) Tenbusch in Detroit. The family of two daughters and three sons lived in Epiphany parish, where the children attended the parish grade school. After graduation from Immaculata High School, Theresa entered the Sisters, Servants of the Immaculate Heart of Mary (Monroe) in 1948, receiving the name Sister Bonaventure.

Earning a bachelor’s degree from Marygrove College, Sister Theresa’s early education ministry brought her to St. John, Benton Harbor; St. Boniface, St. Gregory and Holy Redeemer, Detroit; St. John, Monroe; St. Mary, Wayne; and several years at St. Peter in Deland, Fla. While teaching at St. Vincent High School, Detroit, Sister Theresa engaged in further study and earned a Master of Education degree from Wayne State University. This led to a transition in ministry, serving the community in health services related to respiratory disease and tuberculosis. She held positions in patient affairs, supervision and human development at Herman Kiefer Hospital and the Wayne County Health Department. Her service was recognized by the State of Michigan, which named her as a licensed social worker in 1973. This acknowledgement opened the door to community service ministry as a social worker with Michigan Health and Human Services and the Macomb Oakland Regional Center, both located in Mount Clemens. This ministry endured for 20-plus years.

After retiring from state and county social services, Sister Theresa was an active member and volunteer at St. Margaret of Scotland Parish, St. Clair Shores, and served the parish community in pastoral care and as parish liaison for health care (2005-2018). Over the years, her service ministry took many forms but never ceased. When her health declined recently, she returned to live at the IHM Motherhouse, residing in IHM Senior Living Community and health care center.

Sister Theresa is survived by brother Francis (Evelyn) Tenbusch and sister Noreen Tenbusch, IHM, nieces and nephews, and her sisters in community. She was preceded in death by brothers James and Frederick.

Read her Remembering.