Mary Kathleen Sweeney

On Tuesday, March 24, 2020, Kathleen Sweeney, (AKA Mary Kathleen Sweeney), passed away in Friendswood, TX at the age of 69. Kathleen was born October 3, 1950, in Baltimore, MD. She graduated high school from the Institute of Notre Dame in 1968. She earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Russian language and literature at the University of Maryland in College Park, MD in 1973. In 1979, she received a Master’s degree in translation at the School of Translation and Interpretation of the University of Geneva in Geneva, Switzerland. In addition to her fluency in French, Polish, and Russian, she also acquired an intermediate level of knowledge of German and Spanish.

Kathleen Sweeney worked throughout her adult life as a professional translator of French, Polish, and Russian into English. She was a member of the American Translators Association (ATA) since 1982 and was certified by ATA for French-to-English translation. She worked as a translator in Baltimore, MD, Washington, DC, and Houston, TX. Among her various jobs, she served as a translator for Members of the U.S. Congress at the Congressional Research Service in Washington, DC from 1991 to 1993, and she translated at the International Monetary Fund in Washington, DC from 1993 to 1994. She moved to Houston in 1997 to work as a translator for the International Space Station Program from 1997 to 2004. She worked as a consultant and was owner of the translation company Sweeney & Associates. She never retired from the work that she loved.

Kathleen enjoyed the opera, symphony, ballet, theater, museums, cooking, traveling, and her beloved cats. She was active at her church and served as Lector at St. Clare of Assisi Catholic Church in Houston, TX since 2009 until recently when her health declined.

She is predeceased by her father, James C. Sweeney and mother, E. Jeanne New Sweeney, and brother, Robert W. Sweeney of Baltimore, MD. She is survived by her sister, Margaret S. Lyon (Robert) of Ambler, PA, nephews Benjamin C. Lyon (Breann) of Norfolk, VA, and Peter A. Lyon (Sarah) of Richmond, VA, and many loving cousins in and near Baltimore, MD and Dover, DE. Her closest friends in Houston include dear neighbors and the parishioners of St. Clare of Assisi Catholic Church.

A memorial service will be held in Baltimore, MD later this year. Donations in her memory may be sent to St. Clare of Assisi Catholic Church, 3131 El Dorado Blvd., Houston, TX, 77059. Condolences may be sent to Margaret S. Lyon, 1115 Henley Court, Ambler, PA 19002.


  1. Kathleen always had a smile on her face and greeted everyone as a dear friend. I am sorry for your loss. May Kathleen Rest In Peace. May her family find peace and comfort knowing that Kathleen now rests in the arms of God.

    Maggie Olszewski
  2. I was occasionally paired up with her to lector at Mass. She was such a sweet woman may she rest in peace.

    Grace A. Davila
  3. Kathleen was such a very good person. I always enjoyed seeing her at 5:30 mass and talking to her as we left church. Kathleen often asked us to pray for her cats and she would ask about and pray for our dogs. We will miss her. Prayers for her family and for the repose of her soul.

    Rita Bowser
  4. I always looked forward to hearing Kathleen read at mass. She was an extraordinary lecture who could bring the readings to life. She will be missed tremendously at St Clare.

    Alicia Steinkuehler
  5. I was so saddened to hear about Kathleen’s passing. She always greeted me with a smile when I saw her at mass. She brought a wonderful emotion into the readings every time she proclaimed God’s word. I know now she is proclaiming His word in Heaven. I hope all of her family and friends have many wonderful memories of her smiles and the happy times throughout her life to help them through this trying time.

    Monica Visinsky
  6. On behalf of IND’s Class of 1968, we are deeply saddened by the passing of our former classmate, Mary Kathleen, and offer our thoughts, prayers and condolences to her family and close friends. May she Rest In Peace as she is with our Savior and she will be in our hearts forever. Please contact me when the Memorial Service will be held in Baltimore.

    With deepest sympathy,
    Donna Sauers Davis
    Class Agent, IND ‘68

    Donna Davis
  7. As an alumna of IND’s Class of 1968, I have fond memories of Kathy from our shared high school experience. She was brilliant as a teenager and, from her obituary, one can see she had a stellar career. My sincere condolences to her family, friends and to our IND classmates. “Well done, good and faithful servant. Now enter into the home of my father.” RIEP Kathleen

    Joy(ce) Schleicher Mays

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