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BLESSED ANWARITE NENGAPETA: SHE STILL HAD THE STRENGTH TO SAY, “I FORGIVE YOU”

Blessed Anwarite Nengapeta, Virgin; Memorial: December 1

Anwarite Nengapeta was born in Wamba (Dem. Congo) in 1939. She joined the local Holy Family Sisters and took her vows in 1959, taking the name of Sr Marie Clementine.

In 1964 all the nuns of the Bafwabaka community were deported by the Simba rebels.

At night they were taken to a military house, where Colonel Olombe tried to force Sr Anwarite and Sr Bokuma to have sexual intercourse with him. Both refused categorically in spite of the violence to which they were subjected.

Sr Bokuma fainted, her arm broken in three places. Sr Anwarite continued to resist, saying she would rather die than commit a sin. Between the blows she had the strength to say: “I forgive you, for you do not know what you are doing.” In his anger the colonel had her stabbed many times with a bayonet and finally took out his revolver and shot her. She died a few minutes later. She was beatified by St John Paul II in 1985.

From: The Sisters of St Peter Claver, Bromley, Kent (Mission Calendar)

 

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HAVE YOU A CALLING TO BECOME A NUN WHO HELPS COMBAT HUMAN TRAFFICKING AND RED-LIGHT PROSTITUTION?

FRANCISCAN MISSIONARIES OF MARY – WE CENTRE OUR MISSION ON EUCHARIST, THE BREAD OF OUR MISSIONARY JOURNEY…

Franciscan Missionaries of Mary are Sisters committed to live in international communities throughout the world especially in areas where Christ is least known and least present. We have experienced a call to follow Christ in the path traced out by Helene de Chappotin, Foundress of the Franciscan Missionaries of Mary, and of Francis of Assisi.

Like Mary, our lives are centred on Christ in daily Eucharist; Adoration; personal and community prayer. Christ sends us out to our brothers and sisters where we discover his hidden presence and our brothers and sisters send us back to Christ. In the spirit of Saint Francis of Assisi we journey with our brothers and sisters in the simplicity and joy of Gospel living, a sign of peace, hope and reconciliation.

We seek:

• To view the world and its realities from a feminine perspective.

• To enable women to be aware of their dignity and nurture their self-confidence and self-esteem.

• In a divided world: to live as sisters in international communities. • In a consumer society: to witness simplicity of life.

• To deal with the effects of globalisation on the poor, the marginalised and on the environment.

• To always share the love of God.

We participate in the universal mission of the Church and undertake our mission in a multicultural society which is searching for meaning. Coming from different cultures we strive to witness to unity in diversity within our communities.
As women of faith with a contemplative outlook on life, we centre our mission in the Eucharist, the bread for our missionary journey. We walk with our brothers and sisters, sharing the hopes, aspirations and brokenness of our world and we strive to live a balance of prayer and action. An example of this may be seen in a sharing from our sisters in Singapore where they work in collaboration with other congregations and organisations in response to the exploding problem of human trafficking that has hit them in recent years.

They offer various programmes such as:

• Training and Awareness sessions about human trafficking – which includes formation of volunteers for advocacy and research; and contact and help for victims of human trafficking.

• Street walks in the Redlight area where they meet anything from 80 – 100 sex workers in a single night (they have estimated that over the last two years they have met as many as 10,000 sex workers many of whom are trafficked women). They walk among them as followers of Christ offering them the loving embrace of God’s presence in the dark lanes where they are forced to work.

• Networking with our sisters in the countries where these women are coming from.

In the words of one sister who is part of this project, “This is an experience of bringing hope, healing and empowerment to those on the edges of society. Very often all that we do is to wipe away tears and witness to God’s loving and healing embrace. In the midst of a suffering world, I have come to a new-found meaning of being Eucharist through the sacrifice of the many women migrant workers who leave their countries in search of rice to be placed on the table so that their families may have life. In as much as we bring hope to the suffering, our response becomes truly Franciscan and Eucharistic.”

Helene de Chappotin three weeks before she died said: “I am consecrated to God, my end is Love.” These words continue to resonate in the hearts of almost 7,000 Franciscan Missionaries of Mary around the world who continue to live the Gospel of love.

For further information about the Franciscan Missionaries of Mary, please contact Helen at Cold Ash Centre, The Ridge, Cold Ash, Thatcham, Berks. RG18 9HU or phone +44 (0)78 2626 3202. Email: fmmimesvoc@yahoo.co.uk or you can log into http://www.fmmii.org or http://www.fmm.org [these links are external].

 
 

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