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The Sisters of St Joseph of Tarbes in India

November 28, 2015 / News / by Tarbes Sisters Greetings, Dear Sisters!
A catechism class of 8-year-olds was once asked, “Children, what do you need most?” The unanimous shout was, “Love!” Out of the mouths of babes we have the truth.

If we were to search our own hearts, we would discover the same basic need. But to admit that seems to make us feel vulnerable. Instead, to feel really strong, secure and self-sufficient, we seek the substitute of power – power that means being in control of others, of circumstances and situations; and hopefully, of one’s destiny.

Hence, the unending competition and rivalry, even oppression and cruelty. But when one reaches the top, like the caterpillar on the tallest stalk, one asks, “Now what?”

We are aware of the confusion of rat races in the world and we religious, some, or most of us in our institutions, seem to be bent on joining the mad rush for excellence, while we have, as the beautiful goal of our Institute, the building of Trinitarian Communion – creating oases of love that could spread from each institution of ours, like ripples in a pond, to all the surrounding society, through our staff and students, to touch the whole wide world, while shaping students to be communion-builders.

To give people real (unconditional) love is to give them a taste of God, and God needs us, His chosen and consecrated ones, to make known His infinite, merciful love to the world – the wounded, hurting and disillusioned world. The world is fragmented. The law of the jungle is striving to take over – ‘Might is right’. It needs our charism of communion most urgently. Everyone wants unity, and the resultant stability and peace, whether in the Family, the office, the school, in the country… we yearn for the life of harmony, of the sweetness of living as children of God, for the real life God has created us for, a life that begins on earth and culminates in heaven. Will we deny the world and God this? Let us keep this in mind as we go about shaping our plans for the coming academic year.
A blessed Pentecostal experience

Paulo’s Day 2015
“A good harvest can be expected only when good seeds are sowed on a fertile field”. The twinkling stars can be wondered at only when they are in a dark sky”.
Paulo’s Day, 2015 was a tremendous achievement and celebration in the history of our St. Paul’s Family. The day 31.01.15 was a memorable and a colourful gift wrapped with many delightful programmes. The Chief Guests invited for the day were Rev. Fr. Dr. P. Ambrose Vicar General, Diocese of Chingleput, Rev. Fr. Roach Ignatious, the Superintendent of RC Schools, Diocese of Chingleput, Mr. Sujith Kumar, HR – Professional, Infosys, Founder of Maatram Foundation, and Smt. Sophia Ratheesh, Natya Kala Ratna Rithanjali Fine Arts Chennai, who honoured St. Paul’s Family with their valuable presence.

Paulo’s Day 2014-2015 commenced by seeking God’s blessings to, guide each one of us “From Darkness to Light”, this was the theme of Paulo’s Annual Day. This was followed by the Chief Guest’s welcome and felicitation. As dusk fell, St. Paul’s Super Stars showcased the history of the school Patron, St. Paul, through their wonderful skill of acting on the big stage which was adorned by a 30-inch LED screen and wonderful illuminations. The role play followed, the children enthused all visually, through the “Disney Carnival” in the city of Athens. It was so spectacular, colourful and lively. The stage reached its greatest charm with the presence of Clowns, the Animal Kingdom, Barbie Dolls, Goan Dances, Hip Hop and Electrical Boogie. The entrance on the stage by each group of characters was exciting, as one was in a horse chariot and others in different decorated vehicles. On the whole, the carnival was a mind blowing, stunning and astounding performance.

Paulo’s Day – 2015 created a great platform for the students of various RC Schools of the Diocese of Chingleput to exhibit their talent in dance in the “Maiden Mega Dance Competition” –The Talent Hunt. The Competition was declared open by Smt. Sophia Ratheesh, who has a tremendous record of dancing 126 hours continuously. Her records are found in the Asia Book of Records, India Book of Records and Tamil Nadu Book of Records. Her presence gave a positive vibration to all the participants to perform with greater zeal.

After this great ‘Talent Hunt’, our school talentees were applauded and rewarded for their achievements in various field of excellence like Academics, Culture and Sports. An important item was this; one of our school teachers, Ms. Vasantha Kumari the class teacher of Std. VI was honoured and awarded for her best service to humanity by the Tamil Nadu Human Rights Commission. And again one of our students Sewag M. of Std. VII was also honoured as he secured a State Rank in the exam conducted by Shakespeare Institute of English Studies. We felt proud to have produced such students who are so lively, talented, and willing to grow as mature human citizens of India in the near future.

Our dear Chief Guests shared a few words from their hearts. They enthused all and made everyone derive something informative from their speech. With this positive note, the result of the “Maiden Mega Dance” competition was announced by Smt. Sophia Ratheesh and the winners of the day were awarded and honoured.

Finally the big celebration of joy came to a successful end by rendering our due respect to our motherland through the National Anthem. That day filled each one of us with lots and lots of sweet memories of happy moments. This moved our minds and hearts to work harder for the future Paulo’s days and other events in the years to come.
Sr. Maria Selvi, Principal St. Paul’s Family, Chingleput

Women’s Day
The whole world honors women on March 8th every year and recalls her achievements, success, struggles, problems, etc. and looks forward for the better future. Hence Sunanda Maithri Sagar which works for the women development also celebrated women’s day
Sunanda is working in 26 villages of Bangarpet Taluk, Kolar District. It works very closely with women, children and youth. Sunanda organizes many programmes, among them one of the programmes is formation of women Self Help Groups (SHGs). These SHGs planned to celebrate women’s day. Among these SHGs the Iyappalli village SHGs, planned to celebrate Women’s day in their village.
This village is a poor village, most of the SHG members are belonging to SC and most of them are illiterate women. When women came to know that Provincial Sr. Philomena Cardoza is coming to Sunanda they wanted to make use of this great opportunity to invite her for the women’s day celebration as a chief guest. Hence the celebration was kept on 11th of March this year.
This year women took up the entire responsibility of celebrating the women’s day. Each SHG member contributed the money, cleaned up the ground, arranged the stage, prepared the cultural programmes, etc.
Programme stated with a prayer song, thereafter welcomed the chief guest with a bouquet, shawl, and fruits, with kumkum and chandan. Cultural programmes were very good, women danced and sang well. Children also joined with the women and gave cultural programmes.

The chief guest Sr. Philomena Cardoza congratulated women for organizing the women’s day so well and she encouraged them to develop in all levels and to educate their children. She also motivated them to tap the government resources.

It was a great surprise that women organized themselves so beautifully and prepared cultural programme and met all the expenses of the programme. Thanks to the efforts of our sisters in the past, today women are able to plan and organize the programme for the whole village. We honor them for their efforts and initiatives.
Sr. Jaya

Kindly note: The whole article on an interview with Mary Magdalene (MM) is not supported by Biblical Text. It is an imaginary effort.
Interviewer: In the Gospel according to St. John Ch. 8:1-11, he speaks about you as a prostitute. How did you get into this trade?
MM: This is a direct question that needs my answer:
• First of all prostitution to me was like any other business. Men needed me, my beauty, my intimacy. I was available.
• Secondly it was a question of survival. Many choose different roads to earn. I chose this as my road. For many would not easily plunge into it so freely.
• Thirdly though many a time I realized it (my trade) as a sin, the so called highly regarded and respected men did not allow me to be away. It is by their force that I had to continue till I met “The Man Jesus” one day.
• Finally and most importantly I being a woman was a double victim of poverty and beauty in society. Impoverishment, rejection from my own community made me to be resentful towards myself. As a result, to avenge society I continued selling my body to the ‘so called nobles’ of the locality to unveil their masks that they put on.

Interviewer: When did you encounter Jesus?
MM: A few men wanted me day and night. But when they were questioned, they covered their shamefulness and condemned and branded me an adulterous before the Law of Moses. I became the victim of their sin. Finally the law passed a verdict on me to be stoned to death. Under this circumstance I met “Jesus a man different from all”.

Interviewer: What makes you to say, “Jesus a man different from all”?
MM: I was dragged through the streets while a few people already started pelting stones at me. The stony and rugged path tore the flesh off my legs and feet. My charming and beautiful face turned pink and disfigured with sweat and dust. My eyes were clouded with tears. Fear seized my whole being, my nerves trembled, breathlessness tightened my chest, and at the verge of my death, a pair of gentle eyes fell on mine. His loving compassionate heart embraced my pain. The bonded chain of sinfulness as an adulterous fell apart. The darkness of my death vanished. His gentle gaze filled me with hope. My face brightened as to say: You is for me even if the whole world is against me. I stopped running helter skelter and became focused, for “He Loved Me First”. He looked only at my heart while others judged my flesh. His gracious presence not only converted me but all those who were ready to stone me (at least at that moment). The very words of Jesus, “Go, sin no more”, restored my lost dignity, gave new meaning to my life, conveyed that I am worthy of living. This refreshed and reformed my whole being – not only physically but mentally, socially, psychologically and spiritually.

Interviewer: What kind of talk did He have with you especially as a woman disciple?
MM: He had a special concern for me and the other women in our group. In person he spoke to me a lot of things. He always encouraged me to grow in my feminine qualities, giving his mother’s example. I remember both of us sitting on the mountains and chatting. All that he spoke was nothing other an “Affirmation” – affirming my virtues and my person itself. Whenever I clung on to him trying to possess him for myself, He, with a beautiful smile but firm voice said, “Do not cling on to me”. These words time and again reinforced that I am called to be much more than what I thought of myself. I also remember him saying how he wished to be born as a woman like his mother. I am sure he acquired these qualities from Mary – his mother. On the whole his speech developed all the facets of my life.

Interviewer: Have you come across Jesus empowering women?
MM: It is beautiful. To know Jesus who was more feminine than masculine in nature. It is an easy but a difficult question to answer. I will try my level best to share all that I have experienced and know of Jesus’ empowerment of women. As you already know, ours was a patriarchal society. It was a rather difficult task for him to break through. Yet his heart moved towards empowering women. For instance:
‘A woman at the well’ – Opening her eyes to face reality.
‘A Women who was healed of hemorrhage’ – by restoring her privileges and reputation as before in society.
‘The Canaanite Woman’ – Though Jesus initially seemed to have rejected her prayers, He used her as an instrument to deepen the faith of his own disciples and other spectators. Jesus’ rejection had a negative connotation, yet he empowered her indirectly.

There are ample examples which I can share because the very feminine nature in him made him more ‘woman’ than women themselves. This also revealed the motherliness of God because Jesus was constantly in union with God.

Interviewer: Have you any time thought of writing a gospel?
MM: Not a bad idea, but actually speaking, women’s freedom was curtailed in our time. I thought Jesus’ resurrection would bring a paradigm shift breaking through the roots of the patriarchal system. My experience of the Risen Lord as a first witness of his ‘Aliveness’ and his very choice to reveal it to me pushed me to proclaim Him as my LORD and GOD, but society in no way heard my inner desire. I preferred to give my full self in proclaiming him. You should not be surprised by my saying “Anything known to women spreads like wild fire”. My love for him overflowed immensely that I could not hold it to myself…. It enthused me with burning zeal to live and die for him alone. I don’t regret. If I had been given a chance I would have zealously proclaimed him through a gospel.

Interviewer: Lastly if you are given a chance to address the SJTs, what message would you give?
MM: (Laughing) I am grateful to you SJTs for the opportunity provided to me to share ‘my Jesus role’ in my life. I am indeed glad that you women are zealous and dynamic in offering yourself to Jesus “To Be Daring To Be Different”. All that I want to wish you is, hold on to your beloved Jesus in all circumstances of life. Jesus who is Truth Himself will set you free, if only your treasure is in Him.

Every day there is a change in the cells of the human body, change in peoples’ experiences, technology, in creation, from the tiniest ant to galaxies and so on and so forth. You are part of all these changes. Make God your ‘GURU’, and sit at His feet so as to go forward where you would not dare to go.

“Alienation Is No Integration, But Integration Is Wholeness And Holiness”. This is what he taught me and infused into me. Empower women as he did me and you. For you are His presence in this world. Let each of your uniqueness be manifested in ‘DREAMING’, ‘DARING’ and ‘DOING’

“Don’t Leave the World As You See It”
Sr. Maria Selvi SJT, Chingleput

In Our Spiritual Journey…. The Lord leads us to experiences that are enriching and that instill in us the hope and confidence we need to continue as consecrated persons. Prayer lays hold of God’s plan and becomes the link between His will and its accomplishment on this earth. Amazing things happen to us, and we are given the privilege of being the channels of the Holy Spirit’s prayer. God is eagerly waiting to respond with new strength to every little act of love, self-control and small discipline of prayer.
When I speak of small discipline and every little act of self-control I recall what our retreat preacher, Fr. Leo SJ said. He said that we must first fix our time of prayer and the duration and then remain faithful to it until some emergency calls us. This definitely sounds like being routine and inflexible but that’s what makes religious life so different from the lay faithful. He also said that at any cost do not cut short the time. Since most of us are actively involved in the apostolate sometimes we find it difficult to keep to this as some emergencies call our attention. But they are once in a while phenomenon. If we regularly find ourselves not in tune with our personal planner then we have all the freedom to change to a suitable time that we can keep and remain faithful to. By this we reap a rich harvest and our prayer will have transforming effect on our own lives. He said something more – that we as religious have the privilege of having a regular time for prayer and regular meals. This will definitely ensure that we enjoy good health. Our entire being is balanced, whole and healthy in the Lord in and through His Spirit. We thank God for our life of Consecration and the gift of consecration. May God be praised in our every act of surrender.
John 17: 21 that they all may be one, as You, Father, are in Me, and I in You; that they also may be one in Us, that the world may believe that You sent Me. Reflecting on the Gospel reading of the day the priest commented on that may we all be one. An artist was busy painting a stained glass picture on and on completion he retired to bed. When he did so he heard a noise in the adjacent room where he had placed the painting. He ran to see what had happened, and to his surprise he saw a stranger meddling with the paints and the painting. He enquired what the stranger was up to with his painting. To this the stranger replied that He was making it a complete piece and continued saying that the artist’s picture presented only white children going to heaven. He asked ‘What made you think that only white children went to heaven?’ He continued to enquire, ‘In your paint tray you have multi colours, and yet you have used only the white. I am using all of them to make it complete and beautiful. Indeed the artist looked on the painting and saw brown, black, yellow and green children going to heaven. And it looked awesome!
On 24th May 2015, we celebrated Pentecost Sunday and on 31st the Holy Trinity – The light that we see from dawn to dusk is the offspring of heaven. We thank you, Almighty God for the light which is the smile of Heaven and the joy of the world – the Holy Spirit. May Your Spirit of knowledge and wisdom illumine our minds and enable us to see the awesome beauty in the differences of people ‘the one in the many and many in the one’ as all of us are created in the image and likeness of Him who is the author life.
Sr. Lalitha

The Institute of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Tarbes is grateful to God for the gift of our dear sisters who responded to His call and made their final commitment and first profession. Here is their introduction to the Eucharistic celebration on their special day….

Perpetual Profession – 1st May 2015
Introduction: All praise, glory and thanksgiving to you our Triune God, for your prior gift of Call and Consecration .to belong to you forever.

‘Here I am, I have come to do your will O God’. This is the sentiments of our hearts as we have found the beauty and preciousness of the Divine Love. We are indeed privileged to make our Final Commitment this year, that is dedicated to the Consecrated Life, which challenges us to live the Gospel more radically. Urged and moved by the Holy Spirit we, the Sisters Amali Roseline, Anjnimala Toppo, Delphina Mary, Neelam Prafulla, Rajini Indwar, Seema Minz and Sheela Minz, come forward to offer ourselves freely and joyfully to follow Jesus the Poor, the Chaste, the Obedient one more radically. This is the way we feel called to wake up the world, with the Joy of the Gospel, as Pope Francis exhorts all the Consecrated men and women. Having lived our ‘Yes’ to this precious gift of our Consecration for the past Seven years in the family of the Sisters of St Joseph of Tarbes, we have discovered the beauty and depth of our Charism of Communion.

Being confirmed and gripped by this experience, each of us commit ourselves with great courage, audacity and conviction, to be a Prophetess of Communion, to bear witness to Christ amidst of all kinds of divisive factors, political pressures, persecutions, religious fundamentalism and other threatening and challenging forces.

Today the Church celebrates the feast of ST Joseph the Worker, who is a faithful Servant of God. We are grateful to the Holy Trinity for all the graces obtained through His intercession for our Institute.

On this great occasion we owe our heartfelt gratitude to our beloved parents, brothers, sitters and relatives. It is you w ho have nurtured in us the Love of God and encouraged us to respond to the Call of God. May God reward you for all your love and generosity towards us.

We thank our Superior General Sr. Mercy Jacob, our Provincial Sr. Philomena Cardoza, Regional superior Sr. Christina Mary, all their Counselors and all our sisters specially those sisters who have accompanied us in the communities.

We are deeply indebted to you all our Formators for your untiring efforts and keen interest in our growth during these years of Formation.

We extend our heartfelt thanks to you dear Archbishop, Most Rev Bernard Moras, for having consented graciously to be the main celebrant and to receive our Vows in the name of the Church, uniting us to Jesus Christ, in the Eucharistic Sacrifice. We thank all the Priests who are here to concelebrate the Holy Eucharist and to pray for us.

As we partake of the Holy Eucharistic Sacrifice we humbly request you to pray for us, that we may live our ‘Yes’ in fidelity, with total commitment and Perseverance.

First Profession May 23rd 2015
Introduction: God the Father consecrates people to Himself with special love and for a special mission. This consecration is for a covenant of mutual love and fidelity. Jesus accepting this consecration by the Father, in turn consecrates Himself to the Father for the sake of humanity. His life of Chastity, obedience and poverty expresses His complete filial acceptance of the Father’s plan. As a response to this interior attraction and following Jesus the Sath Guru the consecrated persons dedicate their lives exclusively to God and to His people. On this grace filled and memorable day we Anthony Rani.V, David Mary, Jyothi Joslet, Maria Sobana A, Meena Tirkey, Rebekh S, and Ronika. A have decided willingly and joyfully to express our Yes to God’s call and consecration to live our charism of Communion, which challenges us to explore new ways of living our consecrated life for Communion with people; to make a shift from individual to team approach; to build communities of interdependency, co-responsibility and co-operation for the Mission of Communion.

During our formative years in the SJT Institute we have received formation to appreciate the values of consecrated life and have the awareness of the implications of each of these vows, Poverty, Chastity and Obedience and desire to belong to the SJT Institute. After spending 6 years of formation today, on this sacred day, we come forward to choose God as our only treasure and depend on Him in everything. We decide to promise our joyful availability for obedience, to serve with an unconditional love, in a humble way, to those to whom we are sent with the mission of communion.

On this day of joy we express our sincere love and gratitude to our dear parents and all our relatives. It is you who have nurtured in us the love of God and encouraged us to respond to the call of God. We appreciate the spirit of sacrifice, your simple yet profound faith which sustained us to grow in our vocation. May God reward you for all your love and generosity. With a deep sense of gratitude we thank Sr. Philomena Cardoza our Provincial, Sr. Christina Mary regional superior and all their councilors and all the sisters of St. Joseph of Tarbes who have inspired, helped, supported and encouraged us to discover our call and to say `yes` to Jesus our Master more radically.

We are indeed grateful to you our dear mentors- it is your efforts, sacrifice, keen interest, patience, love and kindness that enabled us to discover our call and to respond to it joyfully. Thank you sisters for your prayers and blessings that have accompanied us all through these years.

We extend our heartfelt thanks to you our dear Rev. Fr. Sagaya John- Director of NBCLC, who willingly accepted our request to celebrate this Holy Eucharist for us. We also thank all the priests who are present amidst us to celebrate the Holy Eucharist and to pray for us.

As we partake in this Eucharistic meal we humbly request you, our dear sisters, parents, brothers and well-wishers to join us in this self offering and pray for us that we may be faithful to our commitment and become authentic religious, living the joy of the Gospel and the Evangelical life.

Impressions of the month of Juniorate As we, the Junior sisters, walked into the Abode of Love – the Prem Nivas community with joy and zeal, we felt the warm welcome of our sisters. We began on 25th April, 2015, with a prayer conducted by the sisters who were preparing for their final vows. The evening prayer with the theme “Beatify your inner glow with Christ” enabled us to be filled with God’s blessings.

Our provincial Sr. Philomena Cardoza met us along with Sr. Nirmala and Sr. Benny who encouraged us to recommit ourselves to the Lord with sincere hearts. Sr. Esther’s keen interest in our prayer life helped us to give priority to prayer and refresh and invigorate ourselves. Prayer is the essence of our Religious life and through clarifications regarding our failures and struggles, we felt her guidance and encouragement to deepen our personal relationship with Christ.

‘The vows are the fence around a beautiful garden’.

A recollection day for the renewal of the vows, by Sr. Margaret Mary led us into an experience of God’s personal love for each and motivated us to renew our fidelity to Him. She helped us to realize that our spousal relationship needs to be renewed and recommitted with truth and faith. The practical examples of sister were a mirror for us to check our own life and to renew our commitment. We did so through a meaningful Eucharistic celebration.
Srs. Hrudaya Mary, Fulmani, Lourdha, Christal, Anitha, Seema and Rexi

Our Retreat
On the 2nd May, we entered into retreat preached by Swami Arul Jyothi Ananda. His points were based on the 15th Provincial chapter, decision on Prayer experience. Father made us realize that consecrated people are called to live a yogic experience, realizing our spiritual energy within in order to transcend ourselves, our human natures and enter into contemplation. The meditations were very helpful to concentrate and have a deeper God experience, silencing our faculties and drawing their attention to a particular energy cycle. We became aware that Christ is our centre – the spiritual energy in the depth of our being.

The power-point presentations were helpful and his talks challenged us to live an authentic consecrated life. His practical examples helped us to formulate our own convictions and led by the spirit to know who Christ really is in our life. The questions given, enabled us to check on various illusions we have about Jesus in our life and to change them through silent meditation.
Srs. Arputha Mary, Roseline, Sabin, Lourdhu Maria,

Valencia Fernandes, Jepsina, Reena and Jaya Sheela

Conscience Formation
“Conscience is not the law-maker but just the follower of the law”

Fr. Henry Angel, a Pallotine, conducted a 5 day session. He introduced the meaning of Conscience and its aspects in our life. Our conscience has to be formed rightly, keeping in touch with the realities of life. He clarified the terms, church conscience, Society’s conscience and individual conscience. The Bible quotations that were explained helped us realize that we need to form our conscience based on the Word of God. Each of us is called to make a difference and not move according to the world. His practical examples made us “want to wake up the world” as Pope Francis says “To think, act, speak as Jesus would do in our place, when we are faced with critical situations.”

As we are Religious, we are called to make right decisions and live our commitment in an authentic way.

Srs. Pramila, Fathima, Sagaya, Jerani, Poonam, Natasha, and Asha
Sessions on Kaya Kalpam

In Sanskrit “Kaya” means ‘body’ and “Kalpam” denotes ‘immortal.’

The Kaya Kalpam exercises transform our sexual energy into spiritual energy.

We learnt many yoga asanas that drive out pain and keep our body healthy.

Doctor Quiet says- “Mind without agitation is meditation”.

We started with a meditation by focusing our attention on each of the nine energy chakras in our body. This meditation enables the cosmic energy that is the energy of the Risen Lord, to flow in our whole body. We became aware of the power of healing and intercession within us.

“I am who I am” – says the Lord.

In dhyana we became aware of our true identity in the Divine i.e. the consciousness of my ‘True Self ’. But if we are caught up by our multiple false selves we begin to loose this true self. In order to keep in touch with this consciousness of the Divine self we need to be in touch with ourselves.

To become the type of person we want to become we need to look at our thoughts. The more we clear our minds of all negative thoughts, the more was our prayer life progress.

Unless our anger is neutralized, we cannot get peace or happiness at any time. Anger wastes our life energy. When anger takes over we are out of control. We tackle our anger by going to the source.

We were invited to check the source of our desires and what good it brings to our consecrated life.

We offer our grateful appreciation to Sr. Marie Lucy and Mrs. Celinamma for their thought provoking sessions which touched us deeply. Sr. Lucy gave us a message from her own experience, not only to give meaning to our consecrated life but also to be greatly challenged, to be effective and energetic in this challenge–packed life; to be deeply rooted in prayer.
Srs. Erma, Linet, Amala, Rose Coutinho, Aruna, Placiya, Leena

Sr.Gervasies’s Day
This was one of the most memorable days of the juniorate programme. It coincided with our Indian foundation day. We Junior sisters were filled with gratitude and joy. We began this day with the Eucharistic celebration which brought God’s abundant belssings on us. We were filled with the memories of the Indian Pioneers and especially of Sr.Gervasie who is the Patroness of us Juniors.

On the 2oth May 2015 we had a short cultural programme to commemorate the death of Sr.Gervasie. We enacted her inspiring unforgettable life history. We were really touched by that holy soul who sacrificed herself in the service of God’s people in the Bowring Hospital. On this day it was fitting to welcome our senior novices to embrace the consecrated life in the light of the lives our early sisters, as they would soon make their first profession.

We concluded the juniorate programme with a prayer service on the feast of Pentecost. We departed to our communities with rich experiences and good memories.
The Junior Sisters

As told….
My boss drove a luxury car everyday and it was my duty to greet him and to open the gates for him, as I worked as a watchman in his villa. But he never responded to my greetings.
One day he saw me opening the garbage bags outside the villa in search for any leftover food. But, as usual he never even looked at me, it was like as if he never saw anything!

The very next day I saw a paper bag at the same place, but it was clean and the food inside was covered well. It was fresh and good food like someone had just brought it from the supermarket. I didn’t bother as to where it came from, I just took the paper bag and I was so happy about it.

Every day I found this paper bag at the same place with fresh vegetables and all that we needed for home. This became my daily routine. I was eating and sharing this food with my wife and kids. I was wondering who this fool could be! To forget his paper bag full of fresh food every day.

One day there was a big problem in the villa and I was told that my boss had died. There were too many guests coming to the villa that day and I didn’t get any food that day, so I thought that one of the guests must have taken it. But the same thing happened the 2nd day, the 3rd day and the 4th day. It went on like this for a few weeks and I found it difficult to provide food for my family, so I decided to ask the wife of my boss for a raise in my salary or else I would quit my job as a watchman.

After I told her, she was shocked, and asked me, “How come you never complained about your salary for the last 2 years? And why is this salary not enough for you now?”

I gave her so many excuses but she was never convinced! Finally in the end, I decided to tell her the truth. I told her the entire story of the bag of groceries, and as to how it was my daily provision.. She then asked me as to when this stopped. I told her after the death of her husband.

And then I realised that I stopped seeing the paper bag immediately after the death of my boss. Why didn’t I ever think of this before? That it was my boss who was providing this for me? I guess it was because I never thought that a person who never replied to my greetings could ever be this generous!

His wife started to cry and I told her to please stop crying and that I’m really sorry that I asked for a raise, I didn’t know that it was your husband who was providing me with the meals, I shall remain as a watchman and be happy to provide my service.

His wife told me, “I’m crying because I’ve finally found the 7th person my husband was giving this bag full of food to. I knew my husband was giving 7 people every day. I had already found the 6 people, and all these days I was searching for the 7th person. And today I found out.
“From that day on wards, I started to receive the bag full of food again, but this time his son was bringing it to my house and giving it to my hand. But whenever I thanked him, he never replied!

Just like his dad!

One day, I told him THANK YOU in a very loud voice! He replied back to me to please not be offended when he doesn’t reply, because he has a hearing problem, just like his dad!

Oh May God forgive us all, for we have all, as humans, judged another person without knowing the real story behind their actions.

May God forgive us all and guide us towards the right path in life.
Contributed by Sr. Euphrasia

“Unless you become like little children you will not enter into the Kingdom of God.”
Marie Victoria F Shenoy is known for her childlike innocence, soft spoken manner, endearing smile, simplicity, and humility.

Born on October 3rd 1937 at Mumbai, she was baptized by her parents, Francis and Hilda Fernandes, and given the name Mabel Therese Rita Fernandes Shenoy. She had four siblings – two younger brothers, one of whom is Msgr. Leslie F Shenoy, and two younger sisters. Sr. Hildegarde, also a Sister of St Joseph of Tarbes is one among them. In 1996, the family moved over to Mangalore. Sr. Victoria entered the Postulancy on the 13th June, 1960. She was professed on January 9th 1963 and made her final commitment on 9th january6 1969.

After her first profession, she was sent to complete her Middle Grade Teacher’s Training Course for one year. Her chequered career of teaching and being director of Church organizations spanned over several years.

She taught the primary classes at our convent school at Mumbai, at St Francis Xavier’s, Bangalore, oversaw the studies of the St Francis Xavier’s boarders, taught at Mumbai again, at Holy Angels Higher Primary School at Bangalore, at Madikeri, and at St Francis Xavier’s School again.

She took a break to study at AVP, Carmelaram, a spirituality Course. She was Director of East Karnataka Regional Vocation Centre for seven and half years, Mission Director of the Kiran Kendre Youth Centre, of EKRVC and Director of Ishvani Kendre, Pune.

In her earlier years, Sr. Victoria Shenoy, was Josephite Animator and the Director of the Sodality. Recently she was engaged in being the receptionist at the parlour. She was a good teacher, excellent in Mathematics and a good organizer. From 1987 to 2010, Sr. Marie Victoria F Shenoy painted Christmas and Birthday It was enlightening and refreshing to hear sisters’ comments on the personality of our dear Sr. Marie Victoria F Shenoy. She was a person of few words, and was never heard to pass a negative remark about anyone. When she was in doubt, she questioned politely. She was straightforward. She was most often cheerful and smiling. She helped our student sisters with the gift of art that she had. She was simple, and asked very humbly for any favour. In her suffering, she was silent and enduring. When she committed a mistake, and was corrected, she accepted it positively.

Her prayerfulness and love for the Eucharist was remarkable. When she missed Mass or Communion for any reason, she was there after Mass asking to receive the Lord. She spent long periods before the Lord in the Chapel, at odd times, and her gaze at the tabernacle was touching. When she bowed before the Blessed Sacrament, she was slow and deliberate and gave the Lord a penetrating look – of love, we presume.

Her room was meticulously clean and tidy. She was very close to the members of her family. As a room-mate, she was accommodating and pleasant. She could relate with anyone. She never interfered with anyone.

She passed away as she lived-quietly, after a brief period of cerebral hemorrhage. To those who happened to have a closer relationship with her, Sr. Victoria was a lovely person to know and a joy to remember.

Dear Sr. Marie Victoria, as you join the group of angels in heaven, singing the love and glory of Jesus and the Blessed Trinity, please remember to pray for us.
Goodbye, dear sister. We love you.

Let Us Remember in Our Prayers All Our Dear Departed

Sr. Beena’s Mother

Srs. Rose Marie and Clara Pinto’s eldest brother Mr. Paul Pinto

Sr. Malina’s Mother

Sr. Jude’s Brother

Sr. Philomena Cardoza’s Uncle (Fr. Remigius)

Sr. Elizabeth Chowrabha’s Cousin

Sr. Susai Rani’s Uncle

Sr. Matilda Jayanathan’s Brother-in-law

Sr. Jeanne Marie’s Brother

Hey, watch where you’re going!
The senior sisters may recall the parable of the boiled frog. It would do no harm here to repeat it for the benefit of anyone else who may read this article.

A frog jumped into a pot of water. He was unaware it was immediately put on the fire. As the temperature of the water raised, the frog’s pleasure increased, he became blissfully unaware of the fact that soon it would be too hot for him. He was so mesmerized by his pleasure, that he was soon a boiled frog. Dead!!

What’s the point of the parable? The third secret of Fatima reveals a shocking fact that is not so hard to accept, because of certain happenings that point to its truth. The secret is, that satan will very cunningly lure away consecrated people, particularly priests, whom he will enslave. He will hypnotize them into worshipping him and lead these sadly foolish, deluded priests to lure away, in their turn, the flock, from Jesus and the true church.

If we only reflect on the savage, brutal manner in which Fr. Thomas a really good priest, was murdered we cannot doubt the origin of the inspiration. But that has nothing to do with us, you can say. We are all frogs, and we like to have a good feeling. We can be blissfully unaware of the dangers involved in indulging in small things that seem “harmless”. We can take liberties with our vows. We can deviate from the demands of our chastity of an authentic community life; we can do things that seem ‘cheeky’, and ‘clever’ and part of joke; but all the while we are blunting the edge of our faith, we are gradually and surely killing our conscience. We become zombies, paralyzed minds, hard hearts and jelly wills. Since we find comparisons who are in the same ‘boiled-frog’ boat we feel comfortable and ignorant that the boat is rushing headlong downstream to spiritual destruction.

Satan may indeed be a defeated enemy, but he is subtle and so jealous of the fantastic reward of an authentic Christian life and the heavenly reward, that he never stops finding new ways to deceive gull-able religious people. And the time is short, he knows it is good, often to step outside the busy rush of routine, and in silence with the Lord, check where we are walking. From those who have received more, more shall be demanded – fruits of a consecrated life. So many graces are showered daily on us, that people in the world have no access to and God has made us responsible to help Him Save ‘THE WORLD’.

Let us also utilize the chaplet of His sacred wounds. Devotion to His wounds will save the world, he told Sr. Mary of Jesus’ crucified love. He wants us to pray this chaplet and do our part in saving the world that is heading towards ruin. Let us listen to Jesus pleading and cooperate with Him, and let us watch our step.

The Chaplet of the Holy Wounds (Of the Salesian Sisters)

Opening Prayer:

O Jesus, Divine Redeemer,

be merciful to us and to the whole world. Amen.

Holy God, Holy mighty God, Holy immortal God,

have mercy on us and on the whole world.

Grace and Mercy, O My Jesus, in the present danger.

Cover us with Your Precious Blood. Amen

Eternal Father, we implore Your Mercy,

through the Precious Blood of your dearly beloved Son. Amen

Large beads:

Eternal Father, I offer You the Wounds of Our Lord Jesus Christ,

to heal the wounds of our souls.

Small beads:

My Jesus, pardon and Mercy

through the merits of Your Sacred Wounds.

Sr.Patricia Adam

Daily Prayer for Healing

Holy Spirit of God, I Worship You!

I Thank You for bringing me to this moment.

Help me to begin this day, with a greater awareness of Your Presence within me.

Help me to know that I am never alone and that You go with me wherever I go.

Help me to accept today as a Gift from God, a chance to choose again.

Help me see that the Past is gone, that it has faded into nothingness

and that it need not have any power over me.

Holy Spirit help me to be truly helpful today.

Every person who comes my way is Your Gift to me. They are all my teachers.

Help me to learn and teach the lessons…of Forgiveness in all my relationships and accept the Gift of each relationship. Help me to Heal and be healed by Your Powerful Grace.

A mouse was always depressed because he was afraid of cats. A great wizard took pity on him and turned him into a cat. Then he started to be afraid of dogs, and so the wizard turned him into dog. Then he began to fear tigers. The wizard who was very patient, used his power to turn him into a tiger. Then he was afraid of hunters. Finally, the wizard gave up and turned him back into a mouse, saying:

“Nothing I do will help you, because you never understood your growth. You are better being what you always were.”

NO POINTING FINGERS A man asked his father-in-law, “Many people praised you for a successful marriage. Could you please share with me your secret?” The father-in-law answered with a smile, “Never criticise your wife for her shortcomings or when she does something wrong. Always bear in mind that because of her shortcomings and weaknesses, she could not find a better husband than you.”

We all look forward to being loved and respected. Many people are afraid of losing face. Generally, when a person makes a mistake, he would look around to find a scapegoat to point the finger at.

This is the start of a war. We should always remember that when we point one finger at a person, the other four fingers are pointing at ourselves. If we forgive others, others will ignore our mistake too.

We are grateful to our sisters who have contributed to this issue and made it possible for us to reach you in time. Thank you, Sr. Lalitha
Looking forward to your contributions for the next issue (June-July-August 2015)
Please send them by the 25th of August 2015
To Sr. Lalitha, Jyoti Nivas College, Hosur Road, Bangalore 560095
You can forward your news to

The 16th Provincial Chapter
November 23, 2015 / News / by Tarbes Sisters

The 16th Provincial Chapter in St Francis Xavier girls high school from 11th May to 22nd May of 2016

The Canonical Visit
November 23, 2015 / News / by Tarbes Sisters

The Canonical visit of the Superior General Rev Sr Mercy Jacob from 25th Oct to 28th Feb 2016

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