local_offer Sisters local_offer Youth local_offer Vocation

Province of Central Africa: Youth and vocation ministry

P eventTuesday, 31 January 2023

See the photos here

 

To make young girls want to join us to become religious of the Assumption is a beautiful mission and also a challenge in youth ministry.

Our mission consists in giving young girls the desire to follow Christ through our Congregation. Being joyful, happy and committed religious are three attitudes that attract young girls to us even before mentioning our charism and spirituality. Young people look to us with confidence as guides and big sisters in the faith...

This year in the Democratic Republic of Congo we have the joy of welcoming 15 aspirants from all over the country.         

The testimony of an aspirant :  I am Rose, an intern of the Sisters of the Assumption in the community of Lemba DRC.  An essential stage in my formation. Lived as a time of discovery and learning, it takes place over a year and allows me to mature the choice of religious life at the Assumption.

The learning of personal and community prayer, through the experience of the apostolate within the Mpiko high school and the St Augustin parish, allowed me to discover the Religious.  This allowed me to gradually appropriate the spirit of the Congregation, to know the life and history of Mother Marie Eugénie and to discern God's will day by day.

We are six postulants in the community of DRC.  This stage allows us to have a deeper experience in the family of the Religious of the Assumption. This time of formation allows us to have a beautiful experience: the joy of living in community, the life of prayer, the apostolic experience within our parish. The courses we receive at the inter-postulancy and in community, the spiritual reading, the accompaniment, the manual work, the recollections, the sessions contribute to our growth and help us to know religious life at the Assumption better.

We have 8 novices of the first year in the community of Yaoundé in Cameroon. A novice shares the story of her vocation.

I am DJDJOU KENMOGNE Gwladys. Born in a Christian family in the west of Cameroon, I did my primary and secondary studies in my home town Bangangté where I used to go to Sunday mass with my brothers and sisters.

I was baptized and made my first Communion in the parish of Our Lady of Seven Sorrows in Bangangté. It was after receiving the sacrament of confirmation that I had a real desire to live and understand the Christian life. Having read the story of Bernadette of Lourdes and seen the story of Mother Teresa of Calcutta, I felt the desire to live a life given to God. But I dare not reveal this to anyone. The beginning of my adolescence was filled with this desire, while at the same time I was seduced by the joys of the world that attracted me and I felt overwhelmed. Hesitating in my desire, I entrusted myself to the Blessed Virgin Mary and after a while I felt free to live and enjoy the joys of adolescence but still keeping the Christian values received from catechesis, from the priests' homilies, from the Catholic action movement "copains copines du monde" [Friends of the World] which I had been part of since my early childhood without forgetting the values preached in my family, namely work, respect, humility and patience.

After obtaining my baccalaureate, I left my native town to go to another city to pursue my university studies, which became my only priority. I was not interested in any group in my new parish of Saint Augustine in Dschang, but I participated in all the conferences, meetings and catechesis concerning the deepening of the faith. After three years at the university, following an academic failure, I met a deacon to share my pain and he advised me to join a group in the parish; I opted for the vocation group. In this group, my desire to consecrate myself to the Lord was reborn but I dared not admit it to myself because I felt unworthy of this call from our Lord, even though my friends and acquaintances thought that I was leading a fairly pious life. The group organises a vocational morning and it is from there that I meet the Sisters of the Assumption for the first time; and their intervention and presentation of the charism and spirituality of their congregation seduced me even though I didn't understand much of it. But until then I did not dare to take the first step.

Three years later I was struck by the slogan of my diocese during a Eucharistic celebration: "avoid sightseeing". I realised that the Lord had a special mission for me. I spoke about it with a diocesan priest and he advised me to approach a religious congregation that would help me to better discern God's will in my life. So I went to Bafoussam where I met the Religious of the Assumption. Seduced by their warm welcome and their simplicity from the very first day of our meeting, I decided to be accompanied by them and I began to take part in the monthly meeting which was held at their house for all the external aspirants. Invited to spend the Easter Triduum with them in silence, I was delighted with the invitation and I left the Triduum convinced of God's choice for me. A few months later I asked to join the Religious of the Assumption as an intern; from the moment they received me I felt fulfilled, happy and in my place until today. It is true that during the first two years of my formation it was difficult for me to live the interdependence, the reference and the sharing of life in community because I had lived several years alone, but with the patience and tolerance of the formation communities that received me I am learning to integrate them and to live them in my daily life. Today I feel free and fulfilled as a follower of Christ and in community with the Sisters of the Assumption who are now my family.