Obituaries and Upcoming Services
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Heaven’s happy gain is our profound loss as our gracious matriarch passed away peacefully on March 9, 2018 with her family by her side. Mom’s fervent devotion to God and the rosary will have earned her, her reunion with dad and all her loved ones. Our hearts are filled with gratitude to our Higher Power for the gift of this wonderful lady for so many years, who brought wit, warmth, and wisdom to all our lives. Josephine was born May 20, 1921 to Catherine (nee Stang) and Michael Haag, in a log house 6 miles south of Macklin, SK. After she obtained her schooling at Bride School, she was itching to spread her wings so she decided to follow her three sisters to Humboldt - Bridget, Mary (Sr. Perpetua), and Matilda (Sr. Marcella) who all became St. Elizabethan Nuns. Eventually she was hired at St. Elizabeth Hospital as an aide. She met her future husband, the handsome Tony Steffen of Muenster, at a nurse’s dance in Humboldt. They married November 23, 1943 in St. Peter’s Cathedral in Muenster, and eventually moved to a farm five miles north-east of Muenster where they raised a family of 11 children; eight girls and three boys. Mom will be remembered as a warm, loving and caring mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother; who while still able, hosted frequent family get-togethers well into her 80’s. She prided herself with her incredible cooking and baking talents, especially her famous “long johns”, buns, cinnamon buns and her “German Kuchans”; her bountiful large garden - canning long into the night; her sewing skills – she made sure we all had a new dress, which we chose from the Eaton’s catalogue, and sewed endlessly, making sure they were all ready for the annual Ives School Christmas Concert. All this knowledge was passed on to her daughters. Josie will also be remembered for her warm hospitality to her friends and family, and her immaculate appearance at all times even into her 90’s. Family was number one and she cemented us all, filled with morals, values and work ethics. Mom’s faith was very important to her, and anyone going through difficult times was always remembered in her prayers. She had the ability to make each family member feel they were very special individuals. She was a member of the C.W.L. for over 40 years. Josie loved playing cards, especially Kaiser, with her friends at Caleb; she also enjoyed watching the “Blue Jays” and playing bingo. Mom was generous to a fault, never an ill word to say about anyone. She was a very strong woman both physically and emotionally, to be able to raise 11 children in an era where conveniences were scarce. In 1961, due to a crop failure, mom returned to St. Elizabeth Hospital where she was hired as the seamstress; later in laundry and finally as “housekeeping supervisor” for 25 years, retiring in 1986. Some highlights of her retirement years were: a trip to Brazil to visit her sister, Sr. Marcella, who was doing missionary work with the poor; a trip to the U.S.A. with her sisters-in-law Alice and Helen to visit the “Steffen” relatives; mom and dad’s 50th wedding anniversary celebration; and her 90th birthday celebration, which her brother, Alec, from St. Paul Minnesota attended.
To carry on her goodness, mom leaves behind her 11 children: Delores Thiemann (John Schenn) of Humboldt; Richard Steffen of Allan; Marcella (Bill) Williams of Saskatoon; Gloria (Alan) Hunley of Leduc, AB; Audrey Stelzer of Humboldt; Rita (Glen Karwacki) of Saskatoon; Tom Steffen of Spruce Grove, AB; Annette (Ken) Schmitz of Russell, MB; Leyone (Lynn) Kosokowksy of Saskatoon; Dennis (Arlene) Steffen of Saskatoon and Colleen (Henry) Zacharius of Hague; 35 grandchildren, 49 great grandchildren and six great great grandchildren; two sisters-in-law Agnes Steffen of Muenster and Alice Schwanbeck of Outlook and numerous nieces and nephews. She was predeceased by her husband Tony (2006); one grandson, Ryan Kosokowsky (in infancy); one daughter-in-law Debbie Steffen (2017); two sons-in-law Clem Thiemann (1996) and Murray Stelzer (2017); her parents Michael (1963) and Catherine (1972) Haag; six sisters: Emilia (1990), Victoria (1908), Sr. Perpetua (1980), Rose (2009), Bridget (1969), and Sr. Marcella (2011); five brothers: Albinus (1908), Alphonse (1918), Albert (1922), Leopold (1936), and Alec (2017); her parents-in-law Charles (1969) and Catherine (1972) Steffen; three sisters-in-law: Lydia (1966), Viola (2001) and Helen (2017); eight brothers-in-law: Henry (1949), Peter (1905), Englebert (1906), George (1907), Ervin (1993), Raymond (1988), Charlie (2000), and Lawrence (2011); and many nieces and nephews. May she rest in peace in the arms of the One who gifted us with her; and knowing mom, she will continue to watch over all of us. She will be joyous knowing that she passed before any of her children, so she could be there to welcome us all to eternity. The Funeral Mass for Josephine was offered on Saturday, March 17, 2018 at 11:00 a.m. at St. Augustine Roman Catholic Church, Humboldt, celebrated by Fr. Daniel Muyres, OSB. Interment followed in St. Peter’s Roman Catholic Cemetery, Muenster. Memorial donations in Josephine’s name may be made to the Humboldt District Hospital Foundation.