This year marks the 75th anniversary of the first missionary departure, India was the first mission land reached by the Missionaries Sisters of the Immaculate. It was in fact August 30, 1948, when the first six sisters left the port of Genoa on the ship Assyria, to arrive in India a month later.
Sr. Teresina Galimberti, one of the departing sisters, described in her travel diary this day as GREAT, BEAUTIFUL, MOVING and AWAITED WITH TREPIDATION. She wrote in 30 August 1948:
We say goodbye and kiss each other. The over bridge is raised and we slowly move away. Oh!
What a blow the separation… However, all make an effort to smile; handkerchiefs are waved on both
sides with the deep outpouring of the heart. … We are all happy and we communicate to each other
the peace and almost inexplicable joy that reigns in every heart. An “Agimus tibi gratias” comes
spontaneously from our hearts, in thanksgiving for the great predilection that the Lord has had
towards us, sending us as Apostles among the Indians.
At nine o’clock we finally see the mountains that announce Bezwada is nearby. A long bridge is
crossed and yellowish water flows underneath. A beautiful city station makes us feel in our hearts that
our goal has been reached.