YELEK, Sister Antoinette (Naomi Antonie), 93, was born in Selden, KS to Anthony L. and Violet Naomi Corder Yelek on September 25, 1923 and entered eternal life July 16, 2017 in Wichita, KS. She received her elementary and high school education in the Selden Public Schools. Upon completing high school she joined the Cadet Nursing Program, finishing her basic nursing at Halstead Hospital followed by a BSN at St. Louis University and an MSN at Marquette University. Additional study at St. Louis University in hospital executive management and after passing oral and written examinations, she qualified for membership in the American College of Hospital Administrators.
Sister Antoinette was received into the Congregation of the Sisters of St. Joseph March 19, 1949. Her first profession was on July 26, 1951 and final profession July 26, 1954. During the early years of her professional life she was a staff nurse, Nursing Supervisor, and Director of Nurses. In 1963 she was transferred to St. Rose Hospital in Hayward, California and named Administrator. Recognizing her excellent leadership skills she was elected General Superior of the Sisters of St. Joseph in 1972 and re-elected for a second term in 1976. At the 1980 election she served as a member on the General Council and was Executive Vice President and later as President of the CSJ Health System. Once again, in 1984, the members of the Congregation asked her to assume the leadership responsibilities of General Superior of the Congregation. Her years in leadership were marked by growth in ministries, especially that of the needs of the medically indigent. Under her guidance, the hospitals and senior-care facilities of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Wichita was organized into a formal, incorporated health-care system, the CSJ Health System of Wichita. She was a visionary, recognized nationally for the many organizations she served and for her many achievements. The conclusion of her professional life was spent as Executive of the St. Rose Hospital Foundation in Hayward, CA. Upon retirement in 2004 Sister Antoinette returned to the Wichita Center where she busied herself helping in the offices of the Via Christi Foundation, Dear Neighbor, anywhere she might lend a cheerful helping hand.
She was preceded in death by her parents and four of her siblings. In addition to the members of the Congregation, she is survived by her sister Ruth Ann Deines, sister-in-law Charlotte Yelek, numerous nieces, nephews, as well as friends and colleagues from her years in ministry.
The homecoming will be 3:00 p.m. July 18th followed by the Wake at 7:00 p.m . The Mass of Christian burial will be Wednesday, July 19th 10:30 a.m. all at the Wichita Center of the Congregation of St. Joseph, 3700 E. Lincoln, Wichita, KS 67218. Memorials may be made to Dear Neighbor Ministries, StepStone, or the Congregation of St. Joseph Retirement Fund.