AFRICA/RWANDA - Spirit of prayer and charitable service: nuns next to AIDS patients

Monday, 5 March 2018


Gatare (Agenzia Fides) - Human and Christian promotion of the poorest and most needy children and youths; professional preparation and social inclusion; support for the educational works and the health pastoral care of the local Church: these are the pastoral priorities of the Daughters of Divine Zeal present in various countries all over the world. Their mission in particular is the spirit of prayer and apostolic charitable service. And it is with this charisma that in Butare, south of Rwanda, they took charge of a center that deals with people affected by AIDS and their families.
"The Notre Dame de la Visitation Center currently takes care of sick people, children who attend primary school, secondary school pupils, children who are learning a job and numerous orphans of AIDS patients", reads a note sent to Agenzia Fides.
The Institute covers patients' medical expenses, consultations, home visits, enrollment at school and the costs of school materials for children and young people, the work of two social assistants and a certain amount of food that is given to families. The Center, which belongs to the Rwandan Caritas, was managed by the Mariste nuns until July 2015 and then passed to the Daughters of Divine Zeal.
Moreover, in Gatare, the Sisters of Divine Zeal also manage the 'Rugege' Health Center, with the annexed nutritional center, in which doctors and professionals of the NGO "Komera Rwanda" alternate. The Rugege Center serves a population of 15 thousand inhabitants offering health care formation, preventive and curative consultation, prenatal and post-natal, vaccination and laboratory for the analysis of malaria, TB, AIDS. This small hospital in the forest, has about 30 beds for hospitalization, with a delivery room.
In the various communities run by the the Daughters of Divine Zeal, the sisters responded to the Bishops' appeals, which established the pastoral care of health, also preparing themselves in the field of alternative natural medicine, thanks to which the poorest populations, with no means to buy medicines, use. The sisters, together with lay faithful, cultivate plants, prepare medicines, ointments, soap, offer lessons for hygiene and food education and take care of families in need. (AP) (Agenzia Fides, 5/3/2018)