Rebecca J. Britt, a retired biology teacher who wrote poetry and essays in her leisure time and was involved in the Roman Catholic Church of the Resurrection, died of breast cancer Tuesday at her Ellicott City residence. She was 69.
Mrs. Britt, who moved to Baltimore in 1955 from South Carolina, taught at Seton Institute and the Samuel Ready School until her retirement in 1975.
She enjoyed writing poetry, children's stories and reflective essays. Three of her books -- "On Eagles Wings," "Web of Lace" and "Dishpan Theology" -- were published during the 1990s. She participated in a creative writing group that meets regularly at Florence Bain Senior Center in Columbia.
"Her writings were her outlet for expressing an abundance of love of nature, family and her spirituality," said a daughter, Josephine Doster of Catonsville.
A convert to Catholicism shortly before her 1950 marriage to Ray H. Britt, Mrs. Britt became an active member of the Church of the Resurrection in Ellicott City, where she supported her husband in his ministries as a deacon of the church.
Mr. Britt, who survives, retired as manager of the United States Fidelity & Guaranty's surety claims division.
Mrs. Britt was a co-founder of the Living Waters prayer group. She and her husband received the Archdiocese of Baltimore's Medal of Honor in January in recognition of their church work.
"Most people who knew her would simply describe her as a true lady -- one who was kind and deeply compassionate," her daughter said.
Last spring, Mrs. Britt was invited by the Knights of Malta to travel to Lourdes, France, where prayers were offered for a cure for her illness. Her husband accompanied her. "It was a highlight of her life," Mrs. Doster said.
She was born Rebecca Jacques in Laurens County, S.C., attended schools there and earned her bachelor's degree in 1948 from Winthrop State Teachers College. She began her teaching career at Columbia High School in Columbia, S.C.
A Mass of Christian burial was offered yesterday at the Church of the Resurrection in Ellicott City.
Besides her husband and daughter, she is survived by a son, Robert D. Britt of Columbia; two other daughters, Patricia Findlay of Ellicott City and Elizabeth Shea of Ilchester; seven grandchildren; and a great-grandson.
Memorial donations may be made to the Associated Catholic Charities, 19 W. Franklin St., Baltimore 21201; or Catholic Relief Services, 209 W. Fayette St., Baltimore 21201.