Although rare, we know there is at least one such Sister in our midst – Sr Christina Swan, who will have a Diamond Celebration of 75 years of religious profession this 21 August 2010! By devoting 75 years of her life to the service of God and God’s people, it can be said that Sr Christina has succefully “saved” up enough to “purchase” and own this rare and previous stone of her life. Now it is hers for good to keep!
This wonderful event, which will take place during the 6 pm Eucharist at St John Bosco Church, Engadine, is a beautiful witness to God’s love and human response, and would be an inspiration to many.
Sr. Christina’s life began in Clongill, County Meath, Ireland in 1915. At 19 she made her vows as a Salesian Sister in England. Sr Christina spent the next 23 years working with children in England and Ireland. Many a child, orphaned because of the Second World War, found refuge in her motherly heart.
In 1958, Sr Christina was asked to come to Sydney, Australia, to open a new primary school at Engadine. She arrived in Sydney on January 2, 1959 together with three other Sisters. Sr Christina began teaching the little ones at St John Bosco Primary School. She became community leader and principal from 1964 to 1972, while continuing to teach Grade 1. On looking back on those days now, Sr Christina wonders how she managed it all.
Sr Christina brought the Salesian family spirit to Melbourne where she founded two houses, Our Lady of Lourdes convent in Bayswater and the St Dominic Savio Child Care Centre in Clayton. She also journeyed with the Sisters in Brooklyn Park, South Australia, for some years as community leader. In this role she gave responsibility and had confidence in the Sisters who blossomed in this freeing atmosphere and were able to carry forward the works of the congregation. Many Sisters attest to Sr Christina’s great love for the young, their parents and teachers and her companionship in community. She is a woman of prayer, a woman of wit, a woman of strength and a woman of compassion.
Source: Salesian Sisters Website