Joy of giving
On a pleasant Sunday morning – April 30, 1900 – the first two Little Sisters of the Poor arrived in Bangalore. His Lordship Bishop Kleiner’s repeated appeals to Mother General for such a Home in Bangalore were finally fulfilled. He accepted all the proposed conditions for the foundation and offered to pay all rent and taxes for three years. The Little Sisters had travelled from Colombo via Chennai and were welcomed by Parish Priest Father Tabard and parishioners gathered in St. Patrick’s Church – the cathedral Church at that epoch. Two more Little Sisters arrived the following day. Their joy was great when, on May 2, the first poor elderly person presented himself. He was received with open arms and many were soon to follow. By May 18, there were nine Residents – six men and three women. The Little Sisters, as they do in all Homes, soon began collecting funds. As Father Tabard did not want them walking in the heat, he gave them a horse. A benefactress, Mrs. Bride, donated a cart. Thus they went begging even to distant places and markets. Many people voluntarily offered little gifts, particularly rice.
Doctors volunteered to serve the aged and the Snaize Brothers offered coffins for free. Their family continued to help with coffins till recently as now they have closed their business. Jeanne Jugan’s spirit continues to animate the work of the Little Sisters of the Poor, who are blessed with the spirit of joy in service to the elderly. With their dedication they form one family with the poor.
The Little Sisters of the Poor strive to continue in their Homes for the aged a Family Spirit. Meals are prepared according to the custom and standard of the region taking into account special diets according to the advice of the doctor. The only concern of the Little Sisters of the Poor is the welfare of the aged Residents. The Home, a charitable Institution, receives poor men and women aged 65 years and above – irrespective of caste, creed or religion – who are in need of our care and concern. A personal interview with the Resident is conducted to facilitate his or her adjustment in the Home.
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Sr. Agatha Anthony