Dame Anselma Örs


Marianne Örs aged 34 American citizen







Born in Hungary on 15th February 1919 to Dr. Ede Hechinger and his wife Maria Gratzl, she was named Maria. However she was always known as Marianne, because her mother was Maria. She had a sister named Magda. In 1930 the family name was changed from the German-sounding Hechinger to the Hungarian name Örs. Understandably, our Sister said little about her life in Hungary in those troubled times. She emigrated to the U.S.A. and became an American citizen in 1953 in Washington DC, where she was an oblate of the Benedictine monks' Abbey of St Anselm's, Washington.


She soon travelled to England where she entered Holme Eden Abbey near Carlisle, and was clothed as a Benedictine nun on 30th November 1954. She was simply professed on 8th December 1955 and solemnly professed on 8th December 1958. Her religious name was Dame Anselma, and her motto was Adsum: Here I am. She was Cellarer (bursar), Linen Mistress, also involved in vestment making, and in charge of the orchard and fruit preserving. For 29 years she never left Holme Eden except for two obligatory visits to Edinburgh and a brief stay in hospital.



Dame Anselma on her 90th birthday



When Holme Eden dispersed through lack of vocations, she moved to Talacre Abbey (now Curzon Park) on 25th May 1983. There she served in the Infirmary and is remembered for her kindness. In 1986 she moved to Colwich and on 27th February 1987 she became a permanent member of the community.
At Colwich she also served very devotedly in the Infirmary and also looked after the linen and laundry. Her health broke down and she spent the final years of her life happily at St Peters Convent Plympton, where she lived very prayerfully and was much loved by the Sisters and staff. She died there on 1st January 2011, age 91, and on 10th January was buried in the nuns' cemetery at St Mary's Abbey Colwich. She remained to the end a very devoted member of the Colwich community.