Sister Yvonne Gehant

Posted 12/30/21

CLINTON, Iowa - A private Mass was celebrated at the Canticle – Sisters of St. Francis, Clinton, Iowa, for Sister Yvonne Gehant, 93, who died Dec. 24, 2021.

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Sister Yvonne Gehant


CLINTON, Iowa - A private Mass was celebrated at the Canticle – Sisters of St. Francis, Clinton, Iowa, for Sister Yvonne Gehant, 93, who died Dec. 24, 2021.

Sister Yvonne was born Oct. 16, 1928 in West Brooklyn, the fourth of seven children of Albert Laurent and Hazel Marie (Lally) Gehant. She was baptized Joan Marie on Oct. 28, 1928 at St. Mary Church in West Brooklyn.

Survivors include one brother, John of Mendota; two sisters-in-law, Darlene Gehant of West Brooklyn and Mary Gehant of Upton, Ky.; numerous cousins, nieces and nephews; and the Sisters of St. Francis with whom she made her home for 74 years.

She was preceded in death by her parents and five brothers, Robert, Eugene, Sylvan, Edward and Roy.

Joan Marie attended St. Mary Grade School and West Brooklyn High School. She transferred to Mount St. Clare Academy for her senior year, graduating in 1946. She attended Mount St. Clare College for one year, prior to entering the congregation of the Sisters of St. Francis at Mount St. Clare Convent, Clinton, Iowa, on Sept. 8, 1947. She received the name Mary Yvonne at her reception on June 19, 1948. She made her first profession on Aug. 12, 1950 and her final profession on Aug. 12, 1953. Her novitiate classmate was Sister Mary Teresa Ruggle.

Sister Yvonne received an A.A. degree from Mount St. Clare College and a B.A. in Education from San Diego College for Women. She held an M.A. in Education from Loyola University, Los Angeles, Calif. She did postgraduate study at De Paul University and the School of the Art Institute, Chicago; Catholic University of America, Washington, D. C.; Kansas State University, Manhattan, Kan.; and the College of St. Joseph, Cincinnati, Ohio. She held Professional Teaching Certificates for Iowa, Illinois and California.

Sister Yvonne spent many of her 58 years of active ministry teaching students at the junior high level. She began teaching sixth graders at St. Francis de Paula School, Chicago. She later taught in Riverside, Calif.; Rochelle and Macomb, Ill.; and Sacred Heart School in Clinton, serving also as principal for 12 of those years. For an additional 28 years, she served in various capacities at Mount St. Clare College. She was an English instructor, business office manager and assistant in the office of the academic dean, the bookstore, and the Flavian Academic Support Center. In 1990, Sister Yvonne was appointed to the position of general secretary of the Sisters of St. Francis. She served in that capacity until 2008 when she retired from full-time ministry. Blessed with an active mind and a keen sense of humor, Sister Yvonne continued a ministry of prayer and presence with the sisters who shared her life, and she especially enjoyed keeping in touch with her family. She lived at The Canticle from the time it opened in 1997 until she moved to The Alverno on Dec. 10, where she died.

The Pape Funeral Home assisted. Online condolences may be left at