Sisters encouraged, grateful Pope met with them
Sister Alice Matilda Nsiah, FST, speaks to CNA after the May 8, 2013 general audience in Vatican City. Credit: Marta Jimenez/CNA.
Sister Alice Matilda Nsiah, FST, speaks to CNA after the May 8, 2013 general audience in Vatican City. Credit: Marta Jimenez/CNA.
By David Uebbing
Facebook Twitter Google+ Pinterest Addthis

.- Sister Alice Matilda Nsiah says that Pope Francis’ decision to meet with her and other superiors general on Wednesday left them encouraged, grateful and proud to be Catholic.

“Our faith is renewed with the Pope and we are very grateful that he give (sic) us the audience. We are very grateful that he has time for us.  We are very grateful that we are working together for the Church. So we are very proud to be Catholics,” said Sr. Nsiah, mother superior of the Daughters of the Most Blessed Trinity.

She is one of about 800 religious sisters who were in Rome May 3-7 for the general assembly of the International Union of Superiors General, which discussed the prophetic nature of the Church and the nature of authority.

When they had their last gathering in 2010, Pope Benedict did not meet with them, so the time they had with Pope Francis was eagerly welcomed.

The sisters met with the Pope at 9:30 on Wednesday morning in the Paul VI Hall, about an hour before the start of his weekly general audience in St. Peter’s Square.

Pope Francis spoke with the sisters about how important their work is for the Church and reflected on their vows of poverty, chastity and obedience.

As she left St. Peter’s Square after the May 8 general audience, Sr. Nsiah recounted the meeting for CNA.
“He gave a very good encouragement about our commitment to the Lord, how we are called by the Lord to serve him in the Church and how we are important in the Church,” she said.

The Pope also stressed the importance of the sisters being spiritual “mothers and not spinsters!”

“Chastity enlarges the freedom of your gift to God and others with Christ's tenderness, mercy, and closeness. But, please, (make it) a ‘fertile’ chastity, which generates spiritual children in the Church,” he told the consecrated women.

“Forgive me if I talk like this,” he added, “but this maternity of consecrated life, this fruitfulness is important!”

For Sr. Nsiah, the Holy Father’s words underscored that “without us, the maternity of the Church is lacking.”

Apostolate in Ghana

Sr. Nsiah also shared some of the struggles her congregation, the Daughters of the Most Blessed Trinity, experiences in its work to care for poor women and impoverished mentally or physically disabled people.

“Number one, we have a problem of finances because we are a developing country,” she explained.

The shortage of funding means that the sisters sometimes are not able to help all the people who come to them for assistance.

And although the political situation in Ghana is stable, Sr. Nsiah described development in that realm as “very slow.”  

“And so it affects all of us: our mission and our dreams. So it is very difficult,” she explained

“But we are managing to do our best to serve the Lord, in the poor, in the simple, in the children, in the women especially, who are always left behind,” she commented.

When it comes to the Church in Africa as a whole, Sr. Nsiah believes that it is strong and “very committed.”

“Now the Church is greater in Africa and the morale is very high. So we are very proud. The Church is Africa and Africa is gradually growing; growing bigger and bigger everyday. So we are very happy,” she reported.

When she returns to her sisters in the central city of Kumasi, Sr. Nsiah said that she will tell them, “the vocation we have chosen, it is the Lord’s.”

“The work – our work – is the work of the Lord. When we do it well, the Lord will bless us and our reward is in heaven. And our mother, Mary, is our inspiration. And since she was able to work with Jesus, with her support, we are able to do our work.

“So we will not be discouraged, we are there, firm!” she joyfully proclaimed.

Marta Jiménez Ibáñez contributed to this report.

Tags: Vatican, Vocations, Women Religious, Pope Francis

Ads by AdsLiveMedia(What's this?)

* The number of messages that can be online is limited. CNA reserves the right to edit messages for content and tone. Comments and opinions expressed by users do not necessarily reflect the opinions or beliefs of CNA. CNA will not publish comments with abusive language, insults or links to other pages


Ads by Google (What's this?)
Ads by Google

Featured Videos

Little Sisters of the Poor press conference in Denver
Little Sisters of the Poor press conference in Denver
Family thrilled to see Pope Francis in Istanbul
Syrian Refugee, Sara, 14, Before Meeting Pope
Ebola orphans thousands of children in West Africa
One year after Haiyan: Philippines rebuilds homes, lives
An Indian contribution to the Vatican's Synod on the Family
Christ Cathedral CNA video Sept 2014
Alejandro Bermudez of CNA accepts ice bucket challenge
'The Real Albania,' remembering those who fled
Pope Francis in Albania, "one of the most important visits of the post-communist era in Albania"
Pope Francis greets paralyzed man who risked all to see him
Franciscans on the banks of the Tiber in Rome, working for the New Evangelization
Pilgrimage from Czech Republic to Assisi and Rome for intentions
Testimony of young Indian who met Pope in Korea
Preparations of the Closing Mass of 6th Asian Youth Day
Missionary of Charity, Korea
Testimony of Christian Love during Pope's Visit to Korea
Religious Sisters in South Korea react to Pope Francis kissing a baby
Warm atmosphere during Holy Mass at Daejeon World Cup Stadium
Images inside Pope Francis flight to South Korea

Liturgical Calendar

December 20, 2014

Advent Weekday

All readings:
Today »
This year »

Catholic Daily

Gospel of the Day

Mt 21:23-27


Daily Readings

First Reading:: Judg 13: 2-7, 24-25A
Gospel:: Lk 1: 5-25

Saint of the Day

St. Romuald »


Homily of the Day

Mt 21:23-27