The first missionary religious congregation for women in the history of the Church and the world is the Institute of the Franciscan Missionaries of Mary founded in 1877 by BL. Mary of the Passion, now in the 139th year of its course.

Franciscan in its essence.
Missionary in its services
Mary - like in its approach.

» Dedicated to universal mission

» Seek strength from the Eucharist

» And offer ourselves in challenging services

Life Shared

Mercy Home ,Nanjanad

                                                     The glorious 50 years of service in Pope Paul Mercy Home, Nanjanad.

 

Jubilee is a time of celebration, rejoicing and giving thanks to God for His bountiful    blessings.  It is also a milestone and landmark in the History of an Institute.  So with hearts full of Joy and gratitude, we the sisters,  the inmates and the co-workers celebrated the 50 years of our presence in this beautiful mission which of course is demanding and challenging.

Pope Paul Mercy Home was started in Ootacamund near Nazareth Convent on 29th June 1966 under the auspices of the then Bishop, His Lordship Dr.Antony Padiyara and was run by the Franciscan Missionaries of Mary.  As the years went by, the number of inmates increased, the home was unable to accommodate them all.  Hence on the 15th July 1976 the mercy Home was shifted to the spacious premises of Nehru Memorial Hospital, Nanjanad, later known as Pope Paul Mercy Home.  Sr.Maria Hilga who is no more, was in charge of the Mercy Home since 1973 and has received various awards for her meritorious, generous and selfless service for the destitute and handicapped people.   She was also given an award by the German Consulate in recognition of her service to the poor not only in Mercy Home but all over Nilgiris and was called the “Mother Tresa of Nilgiris” by the People. The inmates and the sisters gratefully remember her on this auspicious day.

 

The Mercy Home shelters the most deserving cases – the aged, the destitute and the handicapped adults and children (deaf, dumb, paralyzed, crippled, mentally retarded and cases of cerebral palsy).  The Mercy Home besides giving shelter to the rejected members of the society, gives them consolation, peace and happiness, above all love and affection in their desperate situation.  We would like to thank and appreciate the loving, selfless and dedicated service   rendered by our dear Sr.Hilda Rayer for more than 25 years in this home.

  The preparation for the Jubilee started 5 months ahead, cleaning, white washing painting buying and stitching new dresses for our inmates, singing practice for our choir members who are blind and physically handicapped. Sr.Lourdes. our superior was constantly with them making them by-heart the songs as they are unable to read and write.  It took nearly two months to make them ready for the Jubilee day.  Sr.Stella Balthazar was kind enough to help us out for the singing. 

At last the long awaited day dawned with bright sunshine. We started the day with an hour of prayer.  We had the joy of having Sr.Valsa Joseph, our provincial and the sisters from the neighboring communities.  We recalled and expressed our gratitude to God for His powerful presence, unconditional love, guidance and goodness we have experienced through various people, our sisters and benefactors.

 We had a very meaningful and well prepared Holy Eucharist celebrated by our bishop Dr.Amalraj and the priests of our diocese.  The mass started with the entrance procession.  Sr.Valsa our provincial, Sr.Sophia Monis-our ex-provincial, all the superiors present and past, the sisters who rendered their service in this mission carried the 50 lamps followed by an entrance dance by the children of Bethlehem Higher Secondary School.  A meaningful and inspiring introduction was given by Sr.Sagaya Leela thanking God for the wonderful way He has lead and guided this challenging mission over the past 50 years.  Our Bishop Amalraj appreciated and thanked the sisters for their loving, noble and dedicated service.  He also expressed that it is a joy for him to come to Mercy Home.  Everyone appreciated and congratulated our Mercy Home choir, whose singing was melodious and heavenly.

 After the mass the grotto which was built to mark this memorable occasion was blessed by the bishop in the presence of our dear provincial Sr.Valsa Joseph, all the priests, superiors from various communities, all the sisters, our inmates, parishioners and all the invitees.

We had a short felicitation.  Our joy doubled when Sr.Valsa Joseph our provincial read out the apostolic blessings of our Holy Father Francis.  We felicitated our Bishop, priests, Sr.Valsa Joseph, Sr.Sophia Lilly Monis, superiors both present and past, all the sisters worked in this mission were honored and given gifts.  Sr.Valsa Joseph thanked God for leading and guiding this challenging mission for the past 50 years.  She appreciated and thanked all those who toiled in this mission and wished success and strength to continue this noble mission in the coming years. A power point presentation was depicted by our inmates in the form of a villu paattu.  They appreciated the great service done by various people specially the Bishops, provincials, superiors and sisters. There were few beautiful dances performed by the students of Bethlehem Girls Higher Secondary School, Ooty.  Sr.Lourdes Bernard thanked personally everyone who worked hard to make this day a joyful and memorable one.

After the felicitation we had a wonderful gathering of bishop, sisters, parishners, benefactors, our inmates, well wishers, and our orphan children for an agape.  Every one enjoyed the delicious meal and dispersed with heart’s content.

We gratefully look at our past and see how God has lead and guided us through these 50 golden years to carry out this mission of God’s love and mercy to this abandoned people of our home. Working for these people is challenging and unrewarding.  Yet we find joy in serving them as we see God’s hidden presence in them.  We believe that the God who walked with us in the past will continue to lead and guide us in the future.