Part of our History: Celebrations in Ethiopia

Celebrating the Beatification of Brother Charles in RomeCelebrating the Beatification of Brother Charles in Rome

Little Sister Ascale and Ascale Myriam from Ethiopia both spent time recently in London to brush up their English and we are always happy to receive news.

They write:

In 2008, we celebrated the golden jubilee of the foundation of our Community in Ethiopia. We thank our friends and neighbours who put all their energy into making the thanksgiving celebration of all that God has done for us in the past 50 years such a wonderful event.

Our two closest friends, Wro Ethiopia and Wro Ehete, came to help us plan the feast. We felt that they were part of us in devoting their time and Wro Ethiopia provided Enjera (traditional food) and a tent which would have cost us a lot of money. It was joy and celebration for everybody. They all came to join us in cooking and arranging the place for a meal.

Joy to be togetherJoy to be together

Our celebration took place at Nativity Cathedral. There was a family atmosphere. Our great friend, Abba Tsegay Kanae, the secretary general of the Ethiopian Catholic Church, gave a very meaningful homily, as he knows us from the time of the foundation. He gave not only the homily but also a witness about the first little sisters who planted the seed of the Fraternity. He spoke of the simplicity of their life style. In fact one of the symbols was a plant expressing how they had planted the seed and now thanks to their faithful presence it has produced fruit, that is us, the Ethiopian little sisters!

Addis AbebaAddis Abeba

Some of our former aspirants gave a witness about the time they lived with the community, how they had been helped to live their Christian life. One of them even said she has a corner in her house where she takes time to pray. One of our "sons" and great friend who is a Muslim and doctor, Ibrahim, was there as one of us. He also gave his witness when asked by the Archbishop how the little sisters had become part of his family. He said,

"My vocation to be a doctor came from their life. When I saw that everybody was equally welcome, Muslim, Christian, poor or rich that helped me to see everybody equally like them."
It is wonderful to hear a positive witness from a Muslim friend.

This Year 2010 has been a blessing for our Country and for its people in many different ways. The day of the election happened to also be the Feast of Pentecost. Since we had had a bad experience during the last election of 2005, people were tense as to what would come out of this one. But our government took time to help people become aware  of peaceful ways to use their right to elect. They did this through various means, involving the different religions and religious groups who were invited to teach their faithful or young people about non-violent ways and of reacting freely and democratically electing who they chose. For this, everybody worked together and prayed. Thanks be to God that everything went well. Finally our former Government was re-elected. Recently it has been doing a good job working with each age group, creating jobs. There is still a lot of work to be done and the process is on-going. For the last six years, emphasis has been put on road construction, agriculture, electricity, schools, health centers and telecommunication. This gives hope and courage to our people. We all enjoy this positive and collaborative work of our Government.

Card makingCard making Candle makingCandle making

Of course there is always plenty to do in the fields and to look after the goats.

Wushwush, many hands make light work!Wushwush, many hands make light work!

Our Catholic Church has also been blessed in this year of 2010. Its membership is growing. Six Bishops were ordained and three apostolic prefectures became apostolic vicariates. One of them is the Kaffa region, where we have our second Community. In the past his region suffered persecution for its faith and now can have a Bishop from its people. What a time for celebration! As we Catholics are a minority group in the country, the growth of vicariates shows us the increasing number of Catholics. This too is a blessing for our Church and Country.

To help our two postulants with their English studies Little sister Patricia from England came for three months. It's the second time she has been to Ethiopia and it's a joy to meet again. We are happy too to welcome two postulants from Tanzania who joined our postulants to improve their English skills. Before leaving for Tanzania, the two postulants went to Wush-Wush to get to know our second Community. These visits from the little sisters do us good and help to renew us.

Please join with us in thanking the good Lord for all his love and blessings!