The Sisters of St. Charles Borromeo – Eastern province

The Sisters of St. Charles Borromeo – Eastern province

Adrien Villa, # 28 Surappatu Main Road, Vinayagapuram,
Kolathur P.O Chennai 600 099
St. Charles Borromeo

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Ponnapally

Virgo has white blend and is medium large with mild fragrance and is double bloom form.

It is ‘Mary Rose Bud High School’, apparently that drew the sisters to ‘Ponnapalli’ village. A literal translation of Ponnapalli is ‘Village of the Virgin’. And it is our conclusion that the rose dropped by ‘Little Flower’ is the white blended ‘Virgo’ at Ponnappalli.

Ponnappalli in Cherukkupalli Mandal, Guntur Dt., and Guntur diocese is a Christian village that deserved educational and Medico Pastoral care. In sensing its need, it was our bishop Rt. Rev. Dr. Gali Bali DD who decided to construct a school in this village utilizing the generous donation of Mrs. Mary Rose Bud, an American, whose heart melted in compassion for the less fortunate children of Guntur district.

The Bishop thought it best to give the responsibility of running the school to the Sisters of St. Charles Borromeo who for decades have been in his shepherding care. His invitation reached Sr. Jaya, the Provincial, a visionary of the vastly spread out missions in the Eastern Province. Her restless search to study the need of the place and to discern the further moves to actualize God’s plan began instantly. She did discovere the needs of the place and devised the procedures to be carried out to install a community no sooner than the decision was made, after consulting the local authorities and her council.

It is amazing that this third house in Andhra Pradesh was started exactly after 20 years of the second house that was started 20 years after the first one. (June 28, 1967 – Chilakaluripet, June 6, 1987 – Kanaparu, June 13th 2007 – Ponnappali).
On June 13, 2007, the people of the village, the first 72 students of Mary Rose Bud School and some of our sisters installed the community praying fervently over the two of the pioneers Srs. Lovina and Clara Jacintha.

Sr. Sagayam, the then Superior of Chilakaluripet community spared no effort in getting a little house ready for the sisters. Rev. Fr. Bala Showri Reddy, the Parish Priest of Ponnapalli went out of his way to make the sisters’ stay more comfortable by leaving his presbytery for the sisters and himself boarding along with the boys in the hostel. This noble act of the parish priest brings to our mind the sweet memories of our founder Fr. Adrien Brezy, who gave up his presbytery to the co-foundresses of the congregation in 1682.

Whenever something new is ventured into, the anxieties fill the adventurers over the expectation of the onlookers (beneficiaries). The entry of the new community of religious into the village for the school organization had no exception. The big concern of the sisters was how to make an English medium school as a need in a village of 90% illiterate, poor, land labourers whose life style is to labour from sunrise to sunset.

The benefactors and beneficiaries of the enterprise had to discover the philosophy of the venture and the application of it in the given situation so as to be convinced that “such is the will of God”.

Beyond all the material sources, there exists a factor called ‘spirit’.The spirit works its way to accomplish what it wills even when everything else hits the bottom. On visiting hundreds of houses in the village, the sisters realized the ambitious spirit of the illiterate folk as an immeasurable investment and therefore courageously they delved into collecting the children for a English medium school.

The strength of the school was 109 in the first year (2007-‘08). In 2008-2009, it was 175, in 2009-2010 it rose to 250 and currently ie.2010-2011 it is 410. Executing the idea of plying a bus to collect the children from the nearby villages has been the reason for the quick rise in the strength of the School.

In keeping with the tradition set by the Congregation our Sisters of Ponnappalli have involved themselves in caring for the spiritual and social needs of the people in the locality. Their visits to the homes of their students and others are regular. They animate the B.C.C meetings. Students are given special care through evening classes and supervised studies.

Send forth your Spirit, O Lord, and they shall be created and you shall renew the face of the earth.”

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