Ottilie Rosina King, 56, a free-lance writer and a former Washington resident who was active in the Catholic lay movement of the 1950s, died of cancer Friday at the family home in Spring Lake, N.J.

As a Catholic lay worker, she helped found the Christian Family movement and was a member of the church's Cana Conference movement. In 1968, she received a papal appointment as a Lady of the Holy Sepulchre of St. John of Jerusalem.

She and her husband, Henry B. King, president of the United States Brewers Association, maintained a second home in Washington.

Mrs. King was born in New York City and graduated from Mount St. Vincent College in Riverdale, N.Y.

In addition to her husband, of the homes here and in Spring Lake, survivors include 10 sons and five daughters: Elizabeth A., and Bibiana, of the home in Spring Lake, Mary R., and John R., also of Spring Lake, Michael C., Gregory J., Margaret, and Ottilie R., all of Washington, Vincent L., David P., and Anthony G., all of New York City, Matthew S., of Larchmont, N.Y., Henry B. Jr., of Kensington, Patrick A., of Quantico, Va., and Robert C., of London, England; a sister, Kate Mullin, of Glen Rock, N.J., and eight grandchildren.

The family suggests that expressions of sympathy be in the form of contributions to the Ottilie King Memorial Fund, Jersey Shore Medical Center-Fitkin Hospital, Neptune, N.J.