“DO NOT BE SADDENED THIS DAY, FOR REJOICING IN THE LORD MUST BE YOUR STRENGTH.” – NEHEMIAH 8:10
Sister Elizabeth Cogan is the sixth of seven children born to John and Elizabeth Cogan. Sister Elizabeth grew up on the family ranch between Nathrop and Buena Vista, Colorado. The Arkansas River runs through the Cogan Ranch and it is by the river that Sister Elizabeth found her quiet, spirit-filled time…fishing and wandering in secluded areas. When the Cogan children were little, their birthdays were celebrated not by getting a gift, but by choosing their cake and by having freedom from chores – a day to call their own. Christmas shopping was done from mail-order catalogs; they could each pick out a gift that cost no more than a dollar. Memories such as these still bring a smile to Sister Elizabeth’s face as she remembers her youth and the life on the ranch in the beautiful mountains of Colorado
After graduating from Buena Vista High School in1950, she went to Mount Saint Scholastica College in Atchison, Kansas. In 1952, the middle of her sophomore year, she entered the Benedictine Convent of Mount Saint Scholastica, also in Atchison. She made vows in 1953. After receiving her BS in Education from the Mount she received an MAT in Mathematics from St. Mary’s University in Winona, Minnesota. She also attended Notre Dame and the University of Minnesota. After teaching five years in Kansas, she was missioned to schools in Colorado. These years were spent in Walsenburg, Capulin, Antonito, Denver, Colorado Springs and finally at Benet Hill Academy
Sister Elizabeth is a charter member of Benet Hill Monastery of Colorado Springs. Both at prayer and in the finance office she has served the Benet Hill Community with love and integrity. She worked in the finance office in summers and part time while teaching, then full time after the Academy closed. During these years her two greatest joys were to research and implement the community decisions to add medical and retirement benefits for the employees, and to make the investments with socially responsible companies. She also brought the finance office into the computer age.
Sister Elizabeth has deepened her prayer life and love of family and community through many years of illness and physical suffering. But she developed a sense of peace and acceptance that radiates to those around her.
Her hobbies are reading, knitting, crocheting, computer games and working jigsaw puzzles.