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SMIC TEAM in Angola

 2017 SMIC TEAM ADJUSTMENTS in the Angolan Mission

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Prior to the return of  Sister Mirna Dias to Brazil in May, Sister Marivalda Ramos arrived in Angola to prepare herself to administer the School in the Tamba Village, as well as join the rest of the team of SMIC to serve the various parish ministries of Malange.   At this time, Sr. Marivalda updates us with her work specific to our educational ministry as it addresses the needs of youth.

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I will give thanks to the Lord all my life!

The Congregation of the Missionary Sisters of the Immaculate Conception of the Mother of God has been present in Angola, Africa since 2012. The work is carried out together with the Franciscan brothers of the Province of the Immaculate Conception of Brazil.

Our missionary work here in the Angolan province of Malange comes in many forms. In education, we developed the mission with children and adolescents in a primary school located in the village of Tamba. As SMIC, we work in solidarity with the public education network in order to collaborate in quality of learning, as well as to promote the integrity of persons with the fundamental values of life, aimed  to promote a culture of peace and non-violence  in Angolan lands.

Last month we held a seminar at the Santo António School with students from the 3rd to 6th grade on two topics that we consider relevant to the reality here. Alcohol dependence and sexually transmitted diseases. Some of the students’ families, were in attendance at this seminar,  as they are active members of the institution and play a very important role in the development and quality of teaching.

Here in Angola, people start drinking  at a very young age becoming dependent or alcohol abusers   early in life. In the parish, I accompany a group of “ex-dependents” recently recovered from Hope Farm in Huambo. In their reports, they had contact with drugs while they were still adolescents.  The group also consists of adolescents and young people who still use alcohol and other drugs but who want to stop using.

With regard to the issue of sexually transmitted diseases, another challenge  in Tamba, is that of  adolescents with communicable diseases, mainly HIV, AIDS. AIDS is largely responsible for many cases of death here in the Malange province, according to a survey presented by the nurse speaker, Sister Olympia.

The mission entrusted to us here as SMIC, goes beyond education. On weekends we work with parish  formation, accompany  groups in the parish and villages. On Sundays we participate in Liturgy with the people. Sister Jane, (Chinese) accompanies Frei Luis in the villages on Saturdays, there,  she brings healing to the children and young people. On Sundays, the Brazilian sisters  celebrate together with the people in the villages near the school. On October 1st,  in the village of Utende, we took part in a  celebration of the  feast of their patron Saint Teresa of the Child Jesus. It was a celebration full of faith and devotion expressed in songs, liturgy in Kimbundu and Portuguese. After the celebration, the choral group São Paulo (Malange) celebrated with the people.

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The Chinese sisters ( Sisters Johanna (above) and  Jane Frances) work in the health center of the Franciscan Sisters of St. Joseph, serving the Angolan people in their various needs. In addition to their daily work, they go to villages to provide medical consultation. The sisters also give health assistance to the Chinese who live here  either going to  their homes or attending them in the parish’s service room built for this purpose.

We render thanks to God for all that he has accomplished in our behalf for his greater glory.

                                                                                              Sister Marivalda Moraes Ramos

Malange, October 13, 2017

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Holy Name Unit

The First Unit Assembly of Holy Name of Jesus Unit

 

The First Unit Assembly was held from January 16 to 20, 2018. Minister General, Sr. Livramento Oliveira, and Assistant Minister General, Sr. Bea trice Yang were invited to attend our first unit assembly.

On Jan. 16, Most Rev. Bosco Lin, the local diocesan bishop, presided an opening mass at 9:00 am at the unit center, where all 37 assembly members were present, each responding with a positive “yes” to the role calling by Sr. Caritas Chen.

Following the timeline of implementing the new governance model of the whole congregation, this First Unit Assembly created an unprecedented beginning in the history of the province, with a specific new change during the entire sessions of the assembly: ALL SISTERS, instead of only nominated representatives, involved. Thus, the temporary professed, especially the young Vietnamese sisters (except student sisters), all were present, and even a few of them were assigned to take the roles as group facilitators during the assembly sessions.

In order to foster effective communication and reach great consensus, all sisters were divided into two different groups, based on the nature of issues on the agenda: base community and consensus group, in which sisters were able to engage in the communal discernment, exchange feelings, reflections, views or thoughts during the sessions of faith sharing, proposals, and of the election of the new leadership team.

On Jan. 20, the first unit leadership team was established, then followed by a thanksgiving ritual for the out-going provincial leadership team.  With deep gratitude, we thank God for His Spirit fully flowing throughout the assembly gathering, and put trust in His wisdom to continue guiding our new leadership team who will direct all sisters in the unit toward our declaration and new resolutions for the next three years.

 

 

 

 

 

 

top photo: discussion units

mid photo: Srs. Livramento Oliveira, Minister General and  Beatrice Yang, Assistant Minister

 

bottom photo: new Unit Leadership: Srs. Scholastica, Paulina, Benedicta, Catherine, Catherina

 

 

 

 

 

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MOSAIC I, 2017

mosaic – I – 2017

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