Sister Donna Marie Dorfner entered religious life from St. Basil parish in Pittsburgh, Pa. She remembers being drawn to religious life—a life of prayer and serving God’s people—from childhood. The Sisters of Divine Providence who taught her encouraged her to follow her vocation; however, as a teenager, she resisted the call, but the Hound of Heaven pursued her until she said “Yes!”
She earned a bachelor of science in education from Duquesne University and a master’s degree in social work from Wayne State University. She taught at St. Joseph’s in Duquesne, Pa. (1959–60), Our Lady Queen of Peace in Detroit, Mi. (1960–66), and St. Mary’s in Glenshaw, Pa. (1966). She was the director of social service at Divine Providence Hospital on Pittsburgh’s North Side (1968–95) and a social worker at UPMC Passavant in Allison Park, Pa. (1997–2010). She also was a part-time German teacher at St. Sebastian School in the North Hills area of Pittsburgh (2002–10). Presently, she is a daycare assistant at Providence Heights Alpha School. She has been in this position since 2010.
Sister Donna Marie has volunteered with Catholic Charities’ Refugee Program over the years, and she also supports our mission in Santo Domingo and the Pacem in Terris program at La Roche College. She has collected toys, toiletries, and school supplies for the Children of Hope Rwanda Project in the Ukraine, and she supports Amnesty International.
She enjoys operettas and the music of Johann Strauss.