Sr. Frances Farrugia, a Maltese Sister and Head of Dominican Missionary Sisters in Pakistan who is receiving aid from ACN thanks to your generosity relates how the Sisters continue their mission in a country where 96 percent of the people are Muslim and where Christians are the target of repeated violence, discrimination and harassment.
“I do not know one day in 33 years I have been there, or elsewhere in Pakistan, where there was no persecution. We are accustomed to the burning of churches and false accusations of the blasphemy laws. When Salman Rushdie published “The Satanic Verses”, a crowd of hundreds of boys rushed into our school with sticks and began to break everything they could see. Our boy students tried to protect our girls by putting them against the wall and stayed in front to protect them, like a shield, but they couldn’t stop the riot.” However, this situation does not deter the Sisters.
“We intend to continue to increase our mission. The Sisters are very enthusiastic about our plans to open more mission stations. We work among the poor, mainly in education since it’s our main objective.” Few years ago, ACN funded the construction project of one of the schools run by the Sisters. They continue to build more school blocks for mission in villages so they can accommodate more children in the primary schools. “They need furniture, benches, teachers’ desks, boards and all that is needed for a school,” says Sr. Farrugia.
Sr Rakele Agius, another Maltese nun who is a qualified nurse and midwife has opened a pharmacy as there are no other health facilities in the area where people of the surrounding villages can call for help. The sisters also have an orphanage for boys from 3 to 11 years old who are orphans or come from broken families. In addition, they manage a Christian hostel for girls coming from rural areas where there are no educational facilities.
“We bring them here and provide them with a basic educational programme. They stay with us throughout the scholastic year and go home during summer. In this way they can complete their studies and they can eventually sit for Bachelors in Arts or a Master in Management.” Sr. Farrugia asks for our continued spiritual and material support;
“I feel that the prayers of all those who pray for missionaries help us continue to carry out our work. Whatever the need, I can turn to Aid to the Church in Need to help us continue to carry out our work. Then God will provide, as he always did!”