ASIA/BANGLADESH - Giving one's life to Christ to be happy. The testimony of five consecrated sisters

Thursday, 2 February 2023 consecrated life   evangelization   faith   family   nuns  

Gazipur (Agenzia Fides) - One gives one's life to Christ by following His promise of happiness. And following the steps of Jesus leads on unknown paths, where He never abandons us. This is what five sisters who grew up in a Catholic family (with seven children) in the parish of Doripara in Gazipur, near Dhaka, now all religious in different congregations, testify on the Day dedicated to consecrated life that the Church celebrates on February 2. In addition to them, their niece – the daughter of one of the two older brothers - also chose religious life. In memory of their parents, who died a few years ago, they tell of a legacy they left them: "Loving God and neighbor is never a waste of time".
Their father was a flautist and mother a housewife and both parents were Catholics who "always put God first".
Sister Beenais now Superior General of her congregation and tells Fides: "Our mother was a pious woman and our father was a village chief. They raised us to trust in God. Without evening prayer we could not enjoy dinner. Our mother told us one day about the example of Saint Therese of Lisieux, whose four elder sisters, preceded or followed her in the choice of consecrated life".
When Beena was a teenager, she wrote a letter to the Superior General of the Catechist Sisters of the Immaculate Heart of Mary Queen of Angels. In her reply, the Superior General told her that she was ready to welcome her and other girls from her village who wanted to experience religious life. Beena and her father, along with nine other girls, went to Dinajpur. Sister Beena recalls: "With enthusiasm and lightheartedness we left our home. Our father accompanied us to the Mother House of the congregation in Dinajpur. Out of ten girls who tried that experience, four of us became nuns".
Sister Beena reports that the five sisters today are sisters of different religious congregations but are very close: "In religious life we are sometimes confronted with worries and challenges: we stay in community, share joys and sufferings. We help each other grow spiritually. We support each other. We also have a Facebook Messenger social network group that connects us to each other and helps us stay in touch".
Sister Beena says: "Family has given us the foundation to live a Christian life. Family is the soil on which a religious vocation can sprout. Today we visit families and meet other girls and share our testimonies. With baptism we become all called to holiness and to the proclamation of the Gospel".
Sister Supriti, the youngest, tells Fides: "During my childhood there was an atmosphere of prayer in our family. Our parents inspired us to always seek closeness to Jesus. In the evening we prayed the Rosary together. The family bond helped me a lot in my vocation". She adds: "My elder sisters showed me a simple and holy life and, above all, a happy life. Their work, their kindness and charity attracted me and I also chose religious life". As the youngest daughter, Supriti was very devoted to her father and vice versa: "My father suffered from the separation when I left our house, but he didn't stop me". "Today we are all happy and enjoying our consecrated life, keeping in our hearts the teachings of our parents, especially trust in God at all times, in our daily life," the five sisters explain.
The parish priest of Doripara, Father Kajol Joachim Purification, a diocesan priest, reports that there are a total of six priests, 10 religious brothers and 49 religious women in his parish of around 3,500 Catholics. "The fact that there are six nuns in a family is of course an extraordinary fact. I believe that the parents played a fundamental role in raising the children with the love of God. But the girls were also able to observe the lives of other nuns and priests," the priest observes.
Of the five sisters, Sister Lisbetha is a missionary in Congo, where she is Superior of the Congregation of Missionaries of Charity. Sister Linsa lives in Khulna, where she is Superior of a community. Sister Mary Supriti Rozario works as Headmistress of Bottomley Home Girls' High School in Dhaka. Her older sister, Sister Hedwig Rozario, was Superior at Suihari and recently completed her term. Her niece, Sister Lawrensa Rozario, serves as assistant headmistress at Tuital Girls' High School in Dhaka. (FC/PA) (Agenzia Fides, 2/2/2023)