SISTERS OF ST. CHARLES BORROMEO – THE DAWN OF A NEW ERA
Transferring the St. Charles Generalate to India closes a long era of 326 years in the West and ushers in a new era in the history of the Congregation. The inspiration emerged at the General Chapter of January 2006 when the Superior General and the General Councillors were all Indians. This inspiration was carried forward by Mother Benedicta, the Superior General supported by the Congregation. The lines from Robert Frost seem to ring loud and clear:
But I have promises to keep,
And miles to go before I sleep,
And miles to go before I sleep.
It was indeed a journey of faith; like Abraham and Moses, our Fathers in faith, we ventured to move where the Lord would lead us. By faith Abraham, when he was called to go out into a place which he later received for an inheritance, obeyed; he went out, not knowing where it would lead him.
The project was whispered in the ears of Bishop Agnelo Gracias during his stay at NBCLC, Bangalore, he listened keenly and strengthened the movement. Mother Benedicta had a personal meeting with his Eminence on February 4, 2010, the matter was disclosed to Cardinal Oswald Gracias who gave his assent. We are indebted to the Archdiocese of Bombay for extending its motherly arms and taking the Congregation under its wings.
The missionaries from Belgium, set foot on Indian soil on December 30, 1929 at Ranipet in the Diocese of Vellore. They established a school and an orphanage for the poor children of the village and also a dispensary for the needy. This first set up in Ranipet became a strong foundation for our Mission in India. Later there were more calls from different dioceses within the country and the congregation ventured into newer fields of the apostolate. Today there are 64 houses in India, covering 11states serving the people through schools, hospitals, dispensaries, leprosaria, social work centres, homes for the aged, orphanages, boarding houses for the destitute children mid-day meal project for the poor school children and so on.
During the transition period we were privileged to be at Majiwada, Thane in the parish of Our Lady of Fatima Church from June 1, 2006, the death anniversary of our Founder, Rev. Fr. Adrien Bresy. We owe a debt of gratitude to Mrs. Judith Andrade Mital for welcoming us and introducing us to Fr. Peter D’Cunha, the then Priest-in-charge. The rest is history.
The land at Kamba was blessed on July 4, 2009 by Fr. Andrew Mukadham, priest-in-charge of Our Lady of Fatima Church and Fr. Barthol Machado, Parish Priest of Our Lady of Lourdes Church, Kalyan West. On August 3, 2009, Mother Benedicta, Superior General laid the foundation stone for the construction of the compound wall. Blessing of the Foundation Stone for St. Charles Home was on February 6, 2010, feast of Gonsalo Garcias, patron of the Archdiocese of Bombay. St. Charles Home at Kamba Village was blessed by Bishop Agnelo Gracias and inaugurated by Mother Benedicta on September 25, 2011. This building will accommodate the Generalate of the Sisters of St. Charles Borromeo ( formerly at Belgium) and the Home for Senior Citizens. Application for admission to the Home for Senior Citizens could be forwarded, those interested may write to the Sister-in-charge:
St. Charles Home for Senior Citizens,
Kalyan -Murbad Road,
Opposite Royal Gardens,
Green Valley Road, Kamba Village,
Kalyan, 421 301,
Thane District, Maharashtra
Tel. No. 0251 – 6527778
On November 4, we celebrate the feast of St. Charles Borromeo, who had great love for the Church and the poor. It was these values that inspired our Founder to choose him as the Patron of the Congregation. St. Charles was a great pioneer of Christian education in the diocese of Milan, he is the patron of seminaries and catechists.
The clarion call from overseas missions received a prompt reply from the Sisters. Today the Indian sisters are engaged in various ministries in Belgium, Italy, Poland, Argentina, Tanzania and Mexico. One of the remarkable changes in the history of the congregation is that, Mother India who was depending upon the foreign missionaries, is today sending her daughters to the foreign lands to serve in the Lord’s vineyard. ‘Go and teach all nations
Superior General and Councillors
Sr.Mary Jacob – Chair person of Medico, Social and Pastoral Commission
Sr.Celine Saldanha – Asst Superior General & Chair person of Education Commission
Sr.Christy Sarojini – Superior General
Sr.Josita Manavalan – Chair person of Spirituality and Formation Commission
Sr.Hazel Arahna – Chair person of Financial and Advisory Commission