EUROPE/ITALY – “Called to bear witness by our lives that the Lord is alive and risen”: anniversary of the Congregation of the Sisters of Charity of Saint Jeanne Antide Thouret
Monday, April 11, 2022
Vatican City (Agenzia Fides) – “Artisans of fraternity, we inhabit the world with the desire to bring hope and promote many brothers and sisters. Our commitment, in fact, in our missions is to collaborate with the people of the place, by listening to welcome them, to welcome their proposals, their dreams, to offer them training, to give them confidence”. This is what Sister Maria Luisa Caruso, coordinator of the Thouret Foundation of the Congregation of the Sisters of Charity of Saint Joan Antida Thouret in Rome, told Agenzia Fides. Asked on the occasion of the anniversary of the Congregation, born exactly on April 11, 1799, the religious spoke of the many activities carried out over the years in various parts of the world.
“In our clinics, both at the Cameroon Hospital and at the Tigray Health Center, we train specialized and professional staff, and with them the sisters put themselves at the service of the sick and weakened by life, often by loneliness. and hunger. Together we receive and give hope,” says the sister. “Also in our schools, with many lay people, some of whom already have their own profession, others on the way and supported by us in their studies, we try to give a solid education and training to the many children who attend our schools, to make them the protagonists of their own future; We try to accompany many girls and young women in their growth, knowing that “they are bearers of life and builders of a fairer, more united, more fraternal society. In the Central African Republic and Chad, as well as in South Sudan, great attention is paid to children who are victims of long-term conflicts, the e street children. For them, we try to open centers which welcome them, help them to discover other family values, which they often do not have or from which they have moved away, show them other ways of life, but above all we try to make them discover the beauty they already have within them and which can help them contribute to a different, more fraternal, more peaceful society. Among the newly impoverished, we also recognize our planet earth, and we develop a greater sensitivity towards nature, which is expressed, for example, in Indonesia in the cultivation of rubber trees, and many fruit plants, to safeguard the biodiversity and sensitize many young people to pay more attention to nature.
Certain of the hope that we nurture, we have courageous sisters who fully live their mission alongside the peoples at war, in Syria, in the Central African Republic, in Ethiopia, in South Sudan, in the Congo”, continues the missionary. We choose to live what these brothers live, to be at their side and share their difficulties, to grow together in faith and hope. Many are those who, having survived the violence of bombardments and air raids, see in the presence of the sisters by her side a sign of protection, to the point that someone has said: if we are still alive despite the war, c is because you, the sisters, are with us”.
“I think wishing ‘Happy Easter’ this year means something deeper than other years, it means actually touching the strings of our hearts and waking us up as if from a nightmare that seems to cloud our vision with images that testify to unthinkable and terrifyingly cruel. Yet today we want to cry out that life has conquered death, that this devastation we are witnessing has not and will not have the last word, because there is some who have already assumed this cruel evil and conquered it”.
Entering into the specificity of the charism that animates her mission, Sister María Luisa adds: “The Sisters of Charity are called to bear witness by our lives that the Lord is alive and risen: the very cross that we wear around our necks says it: the Lord suffered on the wood of the cross, but he is no longer there, he is risen and he is alive among us. We are therefore called to bring the hope of the resurrection to our brothers and sisters whom we serve every day, in our Galilee. After all, Jesus gave us a light that shines in the darkness: we try to defend and protect it. This light is the greatest wealth and the most effective force entrusted to us.”
“Our Congregation was born in 1799 -concluded the sister-, but I like to remember that we are celebrating the tenth anniversary of the Thouret Foundation, a foundation of the Congregation committed to supporting projects in favor of so many brothers and sisters in the thirty countries, on four continents, where the Sisters of Charity are present”.
(MC/AP) (Agenzia Fides, 4/11/2022)