Thursday, 6 November 2003

Honiara (Fides Service) – Algebra and geometry hold no secrets for Sister Margaret Tisch SMSM but her real passion was Jesus and his Gospel and preaching the Kingdom of God. Sister Margaret, a Missionary Sister of the Society of Mary from Australia has served youth in the Solomon Islands for 35 years and is now returning home. ‘Aim for the sky and you will get something under it’, was a mother’s advice to her little child at boarding school. That child was Margaret as she struggled in Mathematics. The next test she scored 100%. An eye for detail, perfection at all times, reliability, dedication and consequences for those who falter – gives us a picture of Sr. Margaret, Father Ambrose Pereira sdb - Director, Catholic Communications Solomons informs Fides Service
Sr. Margaret Tisch SMSM joined the Missionary Sisters of the Society of Mary 45 years ago. Her formation and initial years were spent in Australia. Opting for the missions – her first assignment was Bougainville where she spent 14 years at St. Mary’s Asitavi, a girls secondary boarding school. Then followed 11 years as Administrator and Vocation directress for the province and these past 10 years saw her as Deputy principal of Bishop Epalle Secondary Catholic School.
‘The Dragon Lady’ – as she is fondly called – has been delighted to be involved with the young people especially at the secondary school level. “Being a missionary is a very enriching experience as you learn so much more from the people of another country than you give to them” she muses, and she breaks out into a light smile. She has set high standards of punctuality and commitment and has challenged all to discipline and growth – something that is going to be difficult to imitate – state many. She is grateful for the warm hospitality and carries with her wonderful memories and happy moments. “I hope that parents and guardians will take a keen interest in their children and be there for them especially at Teacher-Parent interviews and P.T.A. meetings so that 2004 will be a wonderful year for all” is the wish of Sr. Margaret as she leaves the shores of Solomon Islands.
Like the rest of society schools have been affected by disorder in Solomon Islands with problems of finding staff and sudden interruptions of lessons and school study programmes. Now the situation is back to normal also thanks to missionaries and Christian volunteers who make up for deficiency in state institutions. PA (Fides Service 6/11/2003 EM lines 28 Words: 298)