In Memory of Pelagie Povaliraq Katsuak (1931-2010)

Sister Pelagie

In loving memory of Pelagie Povaliraq Katsuak, formally known as Sister Pelagie. The Katsuak family and relatives of the late Pelagie Povaliraq Katsuak of Arviat would like to thank and acknowledge all the people who kindly assisted us after her passing on July 12, 2010. She passed away at the age of 79, and was the last survivor of the late Okatsiak and Kaslak children. She has left behind her husband Mark Nanauk Katsuak and her children: Mary-Jane, Slaava, Donavan, and Seepa, as well as her grandchildren Abby-Rose and Simon.

In 1951, at the age of 20, Pelagie became Canada’s first Inuk nun. She took her vows and entered the Order of the Grey Nuns during a ceremony in the Roman Catholic Church at Chesterfield, N.W.T.

Sister Pelagie served her calling by helping many children who attended residential school through her loving, caring nature. She was a well known and respected individual who gained great confidence in pursuing life to the fullest, no matter what the situation might be. She lived a life of caring and courage and persuaded many people through her quiet, loving, kind manner. She led by example, a life of service, dedication, and commitment to her faith and family.

We would like to thank all those who have sent their condolences from across Nunavut and told us of their fond memories about her. Sister Pelagie will be remembered as a well-respected helper, someone to go to, a supporter in the midst of the turmoil and abuse because she was there, always ready and willing to help. She will be missed greatly by her family.

Thank you all Nunavummiut for your kind remarks and sympathy for the family. A special thank you to Lizzie and Daniel Alareak, who took care of Sister Pelagie in her last remaining days. Thank you to the hospital staff in Rankin Inlet and Winnipeg and also to the Inuit Centre staff. We appreciate your support and love.

“My presence shall go with thee and I will give thee rest.”

— Exodus 33:14