March 15 may be the Ides of March for many, but for Benedictine women it is special for another reason: as the death anniversary of Mother Benedicta Riepp, of Eichstatt, Germany, credited as being the first Benedictine woman to come to the USA. She arrived in 1852 in St. Marys, PA, a small German-based town even today, located about 100 miles southeast of Erie. In the next few years she settled a group of sisters in Erie and then continued west.
She only lived 10 years in America before her young death, but in that time she laid the groundwork for the majority of women's communities of monastic Benedictine women in the states today. Here is a very fine 3-minute video produced by the Sisters in Minnesota, the community in which she finally settled and the site of her grave today.