Part of our History - Little Sisters of Jesus in Jordan, Noviciate in Amman

Outing to Oum QuaissOuting to Oum Quaiss

Yes, Jordan is a most beautiful country! This picture is from the northern border where Jesus cured the woman from Genneseret. In the distance you can see Lake Genneseret. It is the border between Palestine,Syria and Jordan, a place that speaks of a longing for peace, a symbolic place where Jesus walked.

Novices with Christine and MoniqueNovices with Christine and Monique

We ended up being three novices : Carol from Syria. Nadine Marie from Lebanon and Rita Mahaba from Iraq, accompanied by Monique Christine (coming from Syria), assisted by Merved of Iraq, to live all together this new adventure in Jordan. The little sisters of the Amman community, Leya, Elena Celia and Rania welcomed us warmly.

The Week for Christian Unity

Our Community is located in the neighborhood of Achrafiye, a simple neighbourhood where residents of different religions and different nationalities live together, because of the political situation and the openness of Jordan. Today, it is our Nazareth, where we lean to live concretely as the family of Nazareth.

Our experience during the Week of Unity is typical of our neighbourhood. We prayed together at our house with neighbours from different Churches and nationalities and we sang in many different languages! Here, In Amman, we belong to the Greek Catholic Church and we have a small simple parish, way up on the hill ! It is quite a climb every Sunday, while during the week, we go to the bottom of the hill, to the Latin parish! Our Community is in the middle of the hill and of the stairs ! We have ties with both parishes: the young people, the families and the priests. For Holy Week, we wanted to pray in a spirit of unity with the Greek Orthodox, the Syrian Orthodox and the Syrian Catholics of our neighbourhood. Among ourselves we belong to four different rites: Chaldean, Greek Orthodox, Latin and Maronite! Little sister Magdeleine's invitation to build unity is part of our formation in the novitiate!

Carol at workCarol at work

Carol begins our sharing!

The mystery of the Incarnation, so profound that it transformed the fate of of humankind, was accomplished with such simplicity in this little village which nobody considered important... Little sister Magdeleine December 8, 1973.

All that I lived during those months of noviciate spoke to me about the humanity of Jesus, from the formation sessions to the daily life of work. Jesus who became incarnate went down and took the lowest place. For me it was a call to quite simply be here in this little village which enjoys the attention of nobody especially through my experiences at work. Little sister Magdeleine said :

«To remain at the lowest place is not a word, it is a mortifying reality. » June 27,1942

I work at the Italian hospital in the kitchen distributing meals to the patients. The fact of being close to the weakest, the marginalized and the poorest has opened my eyes. Most of those I work with are from Egypt. Many are educated, but they left their countries and their diplomas and came to work to build a future for themselves here. They taught me that it is the humanity of Jesus which gives value to each person not the work they do or their culture.

I also have the opportunity of talking with the patients and those who escort them. Sometimes when we talk together I understand better how God has called me to share his tenderness and goodness. It is my mission in the Community.

Friendship builds up in the neighbourhood too, with each person. Someone said to me one day: « I am your brother. » I understood that this name of « being a brother or sister » only belongs to us if somebody gives it to us.

I thank God for all the graces he has granted me during this period.

« To the one whose power working in us is able to do well beyond all that we can ask or conceive. » Eph. 3:20.

I thank him for his humanity, through which I have been able to know my humanity better and to discover the meaning of my life and the vocation to which he calls me. I thank our Community of the Little sisters which has given me the possibility of growing and becoming more mature in this humanity.


Nadine Marie continues…

For more than six months, I have been working with the Jesuits Refugees Services, an organization which provides services for the refugees. Here in Amman, we meet mostly Iraqis. I am part of the group who visits the families who have been uprooted violently and involuntarily, making a « stopover » in Amman where they wait to be sent somewhere unknown « somewhere else » and a stopover that can last a lifetime.

The waiting is difficult. I myself experienced it when I waited for months for a visa to Algeria to do my noviciate there.   The Lord was preparing my heart so I could understand better the humiliation lived by this people.

Here they live in cramped housing, without jobs, not being able to afford to go out too much so as not to spend their little saved money on transport. The young people are deprived of education... They fled the insecurity of their country only to find themselves alone, with no future.

I am learning a lot from them : despite the sufferings they went through and their present trials, they always keep faith and hope, seeing the hand of God in each person who helps them. they are grateful, always thanking the Lord and relying on Him : « Allah karim » (God is generous).

I will tell you a story. I was having a silent day at Maiin and the Lord spoke to me through an ant! An ant can carry a weight much heavier then itself... it goes unnoticed and sometimes it is crushed under foot...

Among themselves ants help each other and they do not compare themselves to each other as they are so deeply absorbed by building together their kingdom underground, invisible... and this ant, despite the weight she carries, goes ahead, without thinking of its own tiredness and without fear of going up and down, and of the dangers threatening it... it perseveres faithfully to reach the goal it set...

And myself, I only have one goal, like this ant: I want to help build up God'd kingdom silently... through intercession for those who suffer and even more those who make others suffer... « Jesus, whose heart loved us so much, may all the oppressors of their brothers and sisters be disarmed by your love. »

Rita Mahaba shares her experience in the hospital

I have worked outside in a hospital and it has been my first experience as a little sister. The family atmosphere was very beautiful, whether with the personnel of the hospital, between us or between the patients. This loving concern between us made up for all my tiredness from doing simple manualjobs: being a nurses' aide or hospital maid. While going to work, I wanted to bring something of myself, to be a delegate for the  mission of our community, through my presence, my fidelity to work and my availability. I was surprised to see the face of God in each one of those with whom I worked.  I have certainly learned a lot from the this experience of work. When I left the hospital, I was told, « You came across as someone very human in all that you lived with us.» So I just want to thank God who finds the right place for me among people who can help me become truly human and loving!