The Catholic Church has more than 660,000 consecrated women who give their lives in the service of God, through prayer and dedication to others.
Religious life is the beating heart of the Church and touches the lives of many throughout the world. Consecrated women, who embrace the Gospel and respond to the call to go “and proclaim the Good News to all creation” (Mk 16, 15), number more than 660,000 in the Catholic Church throughout the world. Pope Francis has pointed out on several occasions that “where there are religious, there is joy.” Aid to the Church in Need (ACN) is a direct witness to this, since each year it receives 800 requests for projects to support religious women.
A total of 13,862 nuns directly benefit from ACN’s support for subsistence and training in 85 countries, also counting on the indirect benefits they receive in transportation projects, construction or repair of churches, monasteries, seminaries and convents.
Currently, there are 4,416 sisters in formation, 1,035 in novice formation, 3,529 existence aid for active sisters, 2,190 existence aid for contemplative sisters and 2,692 retreats for sisters, who are receiving direct support from Aid to the Church in Need (ACN). According to the Statistical Yearbook of the Church, many of these nuns also carry out their mission in places where armed conflicts and poverty have lacerated the lives of millions of people. They are hope and strong testimony of God’s love for the most forgotten and dispossessed.
The love that conquers all
Sister Cécire is one of them, belonging to the congregation of “Palottine Sisters” born in Masaka, located in Uganda. She says that “I could have had a family, but it wouldn’t be enough for me. The love in me is greater. God’s love floods me and overflows. I feel free to love everyone. My family is bigger than blood ties. My family is my whole village.”
He also added that “When you love, and you do everything with love, you don’t feel tired because you are happy to share what you have received.” She is in Rwanda, she feels living testimony of the gospel for many people who need the word of God.