Towards a definitive, life-giving “YES”

Sister Marina Ntsandi in mission in Karna, Cameroon, shares her experience and her vocational journey with us. They strengthened her desire to follow Jesus the Servant and led her to commit herself definitively to the Congregation of the Daughters of Jesus, on the 2nd of January 2022 in the parish of Notre Dame de Lorette in Yaoundé-Cameroon.



A journey of first formation


It all started on July the 10th, 2009, the day I submitted my letter of application to enter the Postulancy of the Daughters of Jesus to Sr Denise Toublant, then Provincial Superior. Starting in October, along with three other young people, I began to experience community and apostolic life in order to get to know the charism and mission of the Daughters of Jesus.



After two years in the postulancy, I was admitted to the Novitiate. This stage, which prepares a young woman for her first vows in the Congregation, was for me a call to deepen my desire.

In the Novitiate, I received an integral and human formation through sessions, recollections, retreats, spiritual accompaniment, community, and apostolic courses. This stage was sometimes joyful and sometimes difficult. Following Christ at times seemed to me to become dark, without future or happiness. Thanks to my rereading of my life in the light of the Gospels, and with the advice and testimonies of the older sisters, I understood that not everything is “rosy” for those who want to follow Jesus. There are consolations and desolations, moments of turbulence and inner struggles. This was the path that Christ knew and on which I am called to follow him.



On the 27th of July 2013, I took my first vows in the religious family of the Daughters of Jesus, together with my three companions. On that day, I received the cross of the Daughters of Jesus and our Rule of Life from the hands of Sister Marie-Thérèse Retho, Provincial Superior. I was sent on mission to the provincial community in Mvolyé – Yaoundé.


A missionary experience


The Juniorate stage then began. This is the stage of religious life which prepares a young woman to commit herself definitively to the Congregation. After Cameroon, I was sent on mission to the Democratic Republic of Congo, to Cameroon, then again to the DRC for five years.

“Wherever we are sent, we associate ourselves closely with the people of the locality in all simplicity. We collaborate with others, insofar as we are able, for the betterment of all and for the spreading of the Gospel, so that together we may be able to welcome Jesus Christ and live as his Church.” (Rule of Life no. 15)



I lived out this passage from our Rule of Life during my various missions in the DRC.

To be close to these “little ones”, and as I ama teacher by profession, I worked in education. Collaborating with another people has been a grace for me. I started to learn the local language so that I could better understand the pupils and their families. In that way, I could really be with them by knowing and understanding their history, their culture, and their traditions. I shared their joys and sorrows. All of this converted my view and allowed me to experience the realities of other populations.

Through a spiritual experience other than my own, through songs and religious rites, we were all led to Jesus Christ. I really felt like a “missionary” in the diocese of Basankusu (DRC). During this period, in the Archdiocese of Kinshasa, I was also marked by the people living in the old people’s home of our parish of St Achille Kiwanuka. I shared the Sunday Gospel with them, recited the rosary and talked about their daily lives, all in the local language. Every month, the faithful joined us for a mass there.


Back to the source


In 2015, I had the great spiritual experience of remembering the founders and foundresses of the Congregation. Returning to the source by walking in the footsteps of our predecessors allowed me to live fully the charism that began in 1834 with Mother St. Angèle and her companions, our first Sisters. The history of our Congregation was palpable to me through the pilgrimage to the places of mission of our older Sisters, the testimonies of the people of the region of Bignan, of those who worked with them in the schools, of the young people who continue to receive the support of the Sisters in the supervision of their studies. What emotion also in front of the relics kept as a heritage!



A gradual journey towards the total gift of my life


In 2018, all the young Sisters of the Congregation of different nationalities, and with 5 – 8 years of vows, participated in a session organised by the formation committee in Ngoya, Cameroon. This purely Daughters of Jesus formation opened us further to the realities of a fraternal, community, and apostolic religious life in our religious family. It was also in line with our living of the vows of obedience, poverty and chastity in the image of Christ the Servant and according to our Rule of Life.

After a few more years, I asked to take my final vows. My request was accepted, and my preparation ended with a thirty-day retreat according to the spiritual exercises of Saint Ignatius of Loyola.


A commitment for ever


And so, on the 2nd of January of this year 2022, I made my final commitment, surrounded by my family, my Sisters in the Congregation and all those who had come to be in communion with me. Supported by the words of the Virgin Mary at the Wedding of Cana: “Do whatever he tells you” (Jn 2:5), I pronounced these words:



“Lord God, I Ntsandi Nga Marina Cécile, consecrate to you my whole life by the vows of obedience, poverty and chastity that I make for life in the Congregation of the Daughters of Jesus according to its Rule of Life.”

I made this commitment before Sister Chrescence Beyala, Provincial Superior, representing the Superior General, and before Bishop Emmanuel Abbo, Bishop of Ngaoundéré, representing the Church.

In pronouncing my vows on this day of the Epiphany of the Lord, Bishop Emmanuel Abbo invited me to seek Christ each day like the Magi, and to give only what I have. He also invited me to be joyful in the small and simple things and to generously accept to love and serve through the missions entrusted to me.

I received a ring from the hands of Sr Chrescence Beyala, Provincial Superior, as a sign of my covenant, of my commitment, and of my filial love for Jesus Christ, my Master and Lord. At the end of the celebration, Sr Chrescence sent me on mission to Karna in Cameroon.

For me, this commitment is a call to fidelity, to remain “a Sister for all”, and to live the charism joyfully, remaining open and attentive to the events that mark our world today.



God alone can fill our lives beyond our own expectations, which are often different from our own good will.  For me, to exist and be happy is to praise Him, to love Him with all my life and to serve Him through my brothers and sisters, the little ones and the poor.

O Mary, O Joseph, accompany me on my daily journey.

I offer you all who hope in your Son Jesus

and all those who are dear to me.

Protect each one of them and give them your help.


Sr Marina Ntsandi fj,

Karna, Cameroon



Un peu


notre famille



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