Then and Now

Kathy Grosh, IHM, grew up in Strongsville, Ohio, the youngest of the family’s four “big kids” and the oldest of the five “little kids.” She attended St. Joseph Grade School and St. Joseph Academy in Cleveland. She had fun organizing plays and helping create a family club called “The United Nincompoops of Acirema (America spelled backwards).” During club meetings, she was in charge of refreshments and entertainment!

Kathy enjoyed helping plant the garden with her dad. Her mom was the heart of the family – a woman of great faith who gathered the family to pray the rosary and for other faith activities. Her oldest sister, Susan, entered a Franciscan community in Chicago and died there of Hodgkin’s disease at the age of 21 – a traumatic time for Kathy and her family. She also was deeply affected when her younger brother, Rick, died tragically. She now enjoys gatherings with her six siblings and many nieces, nephews and their families.

After high school, Kathy worked in a business office in Cleveland before becoming a Vista volunteer in a poor community near Little Rock, Ark. This contributed to her desire to dedicate herself to work among the poor. When a friend told her about the IHM Sisters’ work, she was interested. She went to Monroe to visit and talked with sisters about their work. She was struck hearing from one sister about her ministry in Brazil; this led to Kathy’s decision to join the IHM community.

She entered in September 1969 and met Martha Rabaut, IHM, who was her postulant and Novice director and became her lifelong spiritual director and friend. Kathy entered with six others. Within a few years, however, five classmates had left the community. Her remaining classmate and dear friend, Terry Burkley, died before professing final vows. As a result, Kathy was a class of one.

Her first IHM ministry was as pastoral associate at Ascension Parish in Warren, Mich. She earned a master’s degree in theological studies from Catholic Theological Union in Chicago, and her next ministry took her back to Michigan. She worked for 10 years at the Catholic Community Center in Benton Harbor, which provided emergency services and supportive counseling. It touched her commitment to being present with the poor and the value of deep, compassionate listening, which led to continuing her studies at the Center for Humanistic Studies and become a licensed psychologist.

Kathy has been a practicing psychologist for 27 years, ministering in Detroit and Monroe. She is currently at Humanistic Wellness Center in Monroe, providing therapy for children, adults and families and loves her work, feeling blessed to share deeply in the lives of many people.

Kathy is most grateful for the wonderful relationships within the IHM community that have deepened her faith and enriched her life. She appreciated the opportunity to minister with individuals and within the larger Earth community. Her IHM life is a source of joy and blessing to her and she strives to be a source of joy and blessings to others.

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