The inauguration of the New Mission
December 8, the feast of the 134th anniversary of the foundation of the Congregation, was the starting point for the presence of the SSpS Missionaries in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
The pioneer sisters gave their testimony about the first moments of the mission:
“The people here and around and in the parish are very excited and filled with joy and dance to welcome us.
Our Assistant General Sr. Mikaelin Bupu, Sr. Damiana Dani Bao, Regional of Togo, and Sr. Aldona Wysocka, Councillor of Togo, together with our SVD brothers, have wonderfully prepared the two houses for the stay of the 9 pioneers. Their sacrifice and hard work are remarkable. It is indeed a great day of joy and gratitude to our God who called us to this mission and to the Congregation that sent us.
During Morning Prayer, Sr. Mikaelin officially announced the opening of the community in Congo. We invited the SVDs from our campus, Bandundu, to breakfast. It was a good start.”
At 7:30 in the evening, there was Mass in the SVD parish. The sisters renewed their consecration in French and introduced themselves to the people. After Mass, they offered them some refreshments. Then they returned to the community and had dinner with the SVD and other religious people.
Little by little, the sisters are getting to know the new challenges. In Bandundu, it rains for nine months and now they are in the rainy season. The campus has many trees and plants, such as jackfruit, mango, banana, butter fruit, coconut, lemon, cassava, pepper, etc. The sisters can hear the chirping of birds.
For the mission, the main need is to speak the people’s language and establish relationships with them. That’s why they’ve already started studying French. On campus, many SVD brothers are also learning and two teachers give them lessons.
“We’re happy, despite the initial difficulties and the adjustments to many things. We are divided into three groups to take care of the cooking, cleaning, and liturgy. We rotate every week” – explain the sisters. Also, problems start to appear, like problems with water, electricity, and network… The prices seem to be expensive… Difficulties that together with the people they have to face.
“We are grateful to God and the Congregation for all the prayers, well wishes, and support,” they say and ask to keep them in our prayers.