“My thoughts are not like yours and my ways are different from yours”, says the Lord. (Is 55/8)

Our God is a God of surprises who reveals Himself in thousand ways to those who are open to His presence and His action in the world.

I was born on 14/12/1964 in a devout catholic family, the youngest of two sisters and a brother. Daily family prayers and active participation in the church activities was part of my upbringing. I was a member of ‘Soldiers of Christ’ and the Charismatic prayer movement in our parish.

From childhood I love to serve the sick and help the needy. After my schooling I wanted to join nursing but from that year i.e. 1980 the rules for nursing admission were changed and it was necessary to complete the plus two studies.

In the same year the Lord called my father to his heavenly abode. And that was the beginning of my personal relationship with Jesus as my dearest friend.

“I love you just as my Father loves me, Remain in my love” (Jn 15/9)

Many sisters of different congregations used to visit our parish speaking to us about their missionary/religious life. During the holidays I along with my friends used to visit their convents and see their activities.  Srs. Lucia Pala and Regina Castelino are the first MSIs I met in my parish and from there started the visits to our Mumbai convent, partaking in the vocation camps during summer holidays etc.

While waiting for the results I visited many convents and had stayed 3 weeks with Little Sisters of the Poor in Mumbai who care for the elderly people. But I was attracted to our charism “the living passion to proclaim the Good News to all peoples”, which I felt relevant for all times and in all places.

Finally on July 25 1982 I joined our convent in Andheri and after a month to Andhra Pradesh. For the first time I was out of my state, where the language, climate and food habits were completely different. Communication with the sisters and companions was another challenge.

But friendship with Jesus helped me to overcome all these barriers. Though there were moments of doubts, the constant presence of Jesus strengthened me to go forward in my formative journey. I was convinced that He alone can give meaning to my life and make me happy. Thus on 16 July 1986 I made my first profession with the desire to belong to him forever.  And today I am glad I belong to Jesus and in Him to all my brothers and sisters in humanity.

After my nursing training I worked in our Gudivada hospital and later I was asked to accompany young girls in missionary animation and initial formation.

The years spent in the challenging region of Jharkhand where I rendered my service in the dispensary, pastoral activity, women’s developmental work etc. were the happy and fulfilling years of my missionary life.

Though I had always expressed my willingness for the mission “Ad Extra” I had given up the hope of it.  But the ways of the Lord are wonderful and mysteries.  For my 50th birthday He gave me gift of the mission of Algeria.  In the moments of ups and downs, pains and sorrows, lights and shadows I can say with the Psalmist “The Lord is my true Shepherd, I have everything I need….. (Ps.23)

Faithful to His promises, He continues to reveal His constant love to me and use me as an instrument of His love and care to the sick and needy brothers and sisters. As mentioned in the Apostolic Exhortation, “Gaudate et Exultate”, we cannot forget that

“Life does not have a mission but is a mission”.

And today in the present difficult situation of Covid-19 we are called to be the prophetic witnesses of God’s love and mercy to all our brothers and sisters i irrespective of caste, colour or religion.

sr. Lucy D’Mello, Algeria

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