Sister Marie Thérèse Catusse dj, on mission in Karna, Cameroon, gives us a preview of an event that is being prepared in the Africa Province. Seventy years of the presence of the Daughters of Jesus in Cameroon! A platinum jubilee!
Following a call made to the Daughters of Jesus by Bishop Yves Plumey, originally from Vannes and Apostolic Prefect of Garoua (North Cameroon), the first three Daughters of Jesus arrived in Ngaoundéré on the 19th of April 1953, accompanied by Mother Pauline-Marie, assistant to the Mother General of the Congregation :
Sister Julienne Le Ray (Sr Anne Maria) – teacher
Sister Emilienne Vavasseur (Sr Nicole Marie) – nurse
Sister Louise Christien (Sr Marie Louis Joseph) – nurse
(photographed together at the celebration of 50 years of presence in 2003)
A departure under the sign of prayer and trust
These excerpts from the “Semaine religieuse de Vannes“, reprinted in Kermaria’s “Echo de chez nous“, from 1953, tell us about the departure of the Sisters from the Mother House.
“On the evening of Saturday the 11th of April, a brief and simple ceremony took place in the chapel of the Motherhouse, Kermaria, intimate but moving, the “departure” of three nuns for Cameroon. The first three! They knelt before the altar, dressed in their new white habit, holding a lighted candle.”
“…The three sisters left voluntarily and with a clear decision, feeling the sacrifice they were imposing on themselves, afflicted no doubt by leaving their double natural and spiritual family, but above all animated by the holy joy of giving themselves to God even more fully and contributing to winning souls for Him, full of hope and confidence in the divine protection.“
Why celebrate this jubilee?
We are celebrating it :
first of all, to remember this departure and to give thanks for all the fruits borne in the last seventy years!
but also, to question ourselves today and to let ourselves be touched!
The first Sisters opened up paths in contexts that are different from our own. in the light of their given lives, how can we invent for tomorrow?
How are we going to celebrate the jubilee?
The opening of the jubilee year will take place on the 19th of April, in the different places where the Daughters of Jesus are presently on mission. Each community or sector has decided how best to live this important time.
The closing week will take place from the 12th to the 17th of December when the Daughters of Jesus of the African Province will be in assembly together. A pilgrimage to the founding places in Cameroon will be proposed to all those who wish to take part before the closing ceremony on Sunday the 17th of December at the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Apostles in Ngaoundéré. An adventure to follow!
Sr Marie Thérèse Catusse dj
for the Provincial Council, Africa