03/19/2016, 11.19
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Missionaries of Charity in Sri Lanka: We will celebrate Mother Teresa’s Sainthood with our poor

by Melani Manel Perera

There are 57 religious in the country, operating in seven dioceses alongside needy and disabled. The regional superior: "On September 4, we will not be in Rome, but we will celebrate the canonization with our poor." In the country "many miracles have occurred through her intercession."


Colombo (AsiaNews) - We waited a long time "for this moment, and now we are very happy for this wonderful news that Mother Teresa will be declared a saint in the Year of mercy. Our happiness comes from the fact that here in Sri Lanka many people received blessings, graces and miracles thanks to Mother": With these words, Sister M. Johannes MC, regional superior of the Missionaries of Charity in Sri Lanka, commented to AsiaNews on Pope Francis’ decision to canonize Mother Teresa on September 4 in Rome.

"As her daughters - says Sr. Johannes - we thank the Lord to have had this wonderful gift from Mother. We received it from God, to whom she had entrusted all of her spirit. We too try to live with the same soul”. To celebrate the news of the canonization, the Missionaries have scheduled "special activities, but we will continue to live in our communities to deepen our vocation."

"Mother Teresa - continues Sr. Johannes - was inspired by Jesus himself to work with the poorest of the poor, to understand better the message that God wanted to communicate. We too, by reading her writings, praying and working are filled with this spirit".

The sisters from Sri Lanka, said the superior, are unable to travel to Rome to attend the ceremony: "But we will hold a simultaneous celebration on September 4 in every diocese".

There are 57  Missionaries of Charity present in Sri Lanka, divided into eight communities scattered in seven dioceses. Two groups in the capital Colombo, the other in Galle, Kandy, Kurunegala, Trincomalee, Vavuniya and Jaffna: "In these places we will celebrate the moment of joy for our Mother along with our poor, whom we have been called to serve." Of the 57 Missionaries, 30 are Sri Lankans while the others are from foreign countries such as Holland, Kenya, the Philippines, Korea and Bangladesh.

Sr. Johannes describes the activities managed by the nuns: "About 90 needy find refuge in our 'Shanthi Niwasa' (House of Peace), where I reside, in Mutwal Colombo district. Another 100 live in Vavuniya and Kandy, where there are also 90 disabled children, who are cared for by the nuns. And we have pther smaller communities". The superior explains, the religious do not just work in their facilities, but "visit the poor families of the area, in neglected areas. Mother has always wanted to meet the sick who need care and love”.

"All the great difficulties we face – concludes Sr. Johannes - we face as if they were wanting to test our faith. I believe this, because what we do is not our work, but the work of the Lord".

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