sr. Elsie Isikeli

I met for the first time “The Missionary Sisters of the Immaculate” when I was a student in their school at St. Mary’s in Watuluma, Papua Nuova Guinea. From the age of 14 to 17 I saw their dedication in teaching, working in the hospital, their family visits and going to the villages. I was touched by their way of encountering people.
I felt that I found my home where the congregation helped me to realize my vocation. One of the examples of the Missionary Sisters of the Immaculate that impressed me is about an elderly Sister from Watuluma community who, in spite of her physical and old age problems used to visit the families in the villages walking for 4 hours. Yes, I wanted to spend my life like that Sister!

I was thinking to join the Missionary Sisters of the Immaculate when I was in the tenth class which is not the final year of the school for us. At that time I was 17 years old. I shared it with my mother. She was favourable to my decision. At the same time, she told me to speak with my father as well, because he was taking the decisions in the family. This fact did not make me calm since my father wasn’t a catholic, but he was a Methodist pastor moreover I was the eldest daughter in my family. According to the cultural traditions of my country the eldest daughter has to marry, help the family and to take care of the other sisters and brothers. My father would never agree with my decision!

Therefore, my mother told me that ‘we have to pray’ as we used to do while my father was away for work. My mother would take out from her bag a small statue of Mother Mary to whom she is very much devoted and together with my brothers and sisters we used to recite the rosary. It is Mary, almost for me a second mother, who gave me the strength and inspiration to continue  my choice. After two weeks of intense prayer, my mother told me that it was a right moment to speak to my father.

When I spoke to my father about my desire to become a Missionary Sister of the Immaculate, I was questioned by my father for three times “Why”?… Then, he gave me a very strong answer that made me to cry. My father told me resolutely: “Now you are an adult, do what you want!”. He kept distance from me and from my choice.

These difficult situations that I lived in my family made me to be more confident in my life,
reinforced my choice and my faith. Today I thank God for this reason.

As the time passed, there were many facts that took place. My father began to accept my vocation, he participated in the thanksgiving mass of my profession, then he recited the rosary with all the family to entrust my vocation to mother Mary. God is great, and everything is possible for Him!

As a Missionary Sister of the Immaculate, I had lot of possibilities and surprises. I made an experience of about 9 months in India before my final profession, a period of preparation for the mission and study in Italy and my destination to Bangladesh that was really unexpected!

As a missionary my desire is to help everyone, especially the homeless and the street children who have no possibility to grow up well and to study. Following the example of Jesus Christ I hope that they may have a better life and to give them trust and hope for future. I entrust myself to Jesus especially to Mary who always accompanied me and my life as missionary I can continue to say still “In fact everything is possible to God!”

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