121 A tribute to an aunt I loved
Sr Amrita (Rita before joining the Apostolic Carmel was a catholic nun and my mom’s older sister who spent the last 14 years of her life confined to a convent in Nagpur. She did make two trips to Pune and Nagpur in between. I made sure I made at least one annual visit to her. She passed away on 29th December 2o11 and here is my farewell message to her
I love you Aunty Rita. I was destined to journey with you as a close observer of the struggle you went through over the past three decades. I won’t be there in person to bid adieu to you but I know you are already in a better place with the people you loved dearly.
I was lucky to hear you and wish you for Christmas this past Sunday. I was fortunate to spend a day with you exactly two months ago at Ajni before I left the country. And I had the privilege of visiting you 18 times in the past 14 years at Nagpur.
You were a living martyr and an inspiration to several of us who came in close contact with you. Your suffered silently and made a mark on several people with whom your path crossed. Your 66 years on earth were not easy but you carried on valiantly.
Your love for Jesus was seen in the way you prayed fervently. Your generosity to the lesser privileged was demonstrated in the way you shared whatever little you had. Your concern for your family back in Mangalore was felt in every interaction one had with you.
The fact that you penned your unpublished autobiography so that others may know. The courage you showed in conquering pain every year for the last two decades and the love you showered on the little girls at Carmel Ajni spoke volumes of your passion for life.
The gratitude you had for the sisters of the Apostolic Carmel especially in the Western Province. The bond you built with Kantha and Shobha who took care of you day and night and the friends you cultivated both among former students and well wishers in Nagpur was a witness to the sense of affection you imbibed from an early age.
Every time I visited you, you would say that you wouldn’t live to see me on my next visit. You outlived those predictions and continued taking one day at a time in the service of the Lord year after year. But this Christmas season you must have felt the time indeed had come.
As you leave behind a legacy of suffering and piety be assured that we- the many on whose lives you made an impact with your fight against arthritis will look up to you to keep blessing us from heaven. You lived your life to the best of your ability. We will miss you as a new year begins and beyond. I will always love you Aunty Rita.