A native of Lorain, Ohio, Associate Evelyn Godwin entered the Medical Mission Sisters in 1960. Following first vows, she was sent to Pakistan in 1964, where she worked at both Holy Family Hospital Rawalpindi and Karachi as a nurse-midwife.
Although she chose to end her canonical membership in 1975, Evelyn realized afterwards that “I had taken gifts with me from the MMS community: a love of good liturgy, the need to meet and know people concerned about the impoverished and unjust situations facing our city, and ways to reach out to help alleviate these conditions.”
Evelyn continued her work as a nurse midwife, first in Kingsport, Tennessee, and then in Cleveland, Ohio. In 1981 she married Norman A. Godwin and, a few years later in 1984, they both made Associate commitments. Unfortunately, Norman passed away that same year.
Following her husband’s death, Evelyn worked as a school nurse in a Catholic High School before her interest in clinical pastoral education led her to a program at the Cleveland Clinic Foundation where she completed a yearlong residency in 1989. She then worked as a lay staff chaplain at a local hospital for ten years while earning her BA degree from Ursuline College in Pepper Pike, Ohio, in 1994. She later became director of spiritual care for a large health care center, retiring in 2002. Throughout her career, she often left a memorable impression on both the people she served and her coworkers, one of whom described her as “gentle and compassionate, warm, peaceful and accepting.” Today, Evelyn lives in Brook Park, Ohio, and volunteers with St. Timothy Missionary Baptist Church, helping to prepare bags of food that are distributed to community members.
Evelyn shares, “In my own small corner of the vineyard I try to do some of the hundred and one small and large things that make life livable and joyful for all of us.”