Sister Antoinette (Nonie) Gutzler, M.M.
Current Ministry Location-Maryknoll Sisters Center-Maryknoll, NY
Sister Antoinette (Nonie) was born to Antoinette (Mazgolis) Gutzler and Arthur Gutzler on March 15th, 1946 in Brooklyn, NY. She has two siblings, one sister and one brother.
After graduating from Bishop McDonnell High School in 1963, she entered Maryknoll at the Sisters Center in Ossining, NY in 1964. After receiving a B.A. in Theology from Mundelein College in Chicago in 1971, Sister Nonie was assigned to Tanzania, East Africa. In Mwanza, her ministry was multi-faceted—high school religious education, work with the Young Catholic Students movement, and co-directing a center for students to meet the needs of a growing population of young people away from home for studies.
In 1975, Sister Nonie was asked to return to the United States to do mission education and promotion in the New England area for two years: talking in churches, schools, women’s guilds, and other places. Enthusiastic about the experience Sister Nonie says, “I really loved it. I’d been out of touch with the Church in America. I liked sharing what I had experienced in mission and I realized that these were the people who sent me.”
In 1978, Sister Nonie was assigned to Taiwan and began the challenges of learning a new culture and new languages: Mandarin and Taiwanese! She was the director of the Solidarity Workers Center in Kaohsiung. The center, begun by the Maryknoll Sisters, provided a place where factory workers could meet friends, find support and guidance for the direction of their lives, and learn leadership skills to help engage the changing situation of workers in Taiwan.
Back at Maryknoll, NY in 1989, Sister Nonie served as Personnel Director of the Maryknoll Sisters Congregation until 1993. Those years were significant ones for her as she touched “holy ground” in her work with Maryknoll Sisters either going to or returning from their mission areas.
In 1995, Sister Nonie earned an M.A. in Systematic Theology from Fordham University in New York and a Ph.D. in 2001. During her time at Fordham, Sister Nonie was a graduate assistant and research assistant to Dr. Elizabeth Johnson SSJ, and also a full-time teaching fellow.
In 1997, Sister Nonie gave a series of lectures in Hong Kong and Taiwan on Christology. She also led a spiritual renewal program in the Holy Land. In the fall of 2001, Sister Nonie returned to Taiwan to engage in the exciting work of theological education in a variety of ways: teaching, giving retreats, and parish Scripture sharing groups. She also was involved in spiritual direction and group facilitation.
Sister Nonie is a committee member of the Ecclesia of Women in Asia, a gathering of Asian women theologians. In 2008, Sister Nonie was invited to give a talk to the Federation of Asian Bishops Conference, and spoke on “Enabling Women: Gender in the Context of Church Documents.”
In 2014, Sister Nonie was elected to the Sisters Congregational Leadership Team to serve as President of the Maryknoll Sisters Congregation until 2021.