Project 6608 - Construction of a Building for the Noviciate
Benedictine Sisters of St Lioba (Ashirbhavan/Bhopal, India)
Bhopal is the capital of Madhya Pradesh, in Hindi ‘The State of the Centre’. It has about 1.8 million inhabitants, the majority of whom have always been Hindu.
Bhopal is best known for the major industrial disaster in December 1984, caused by the escape of a chemical product in a factory run by an American firm making pesticides. About 4,000 people died and hundreds of thousands of people were affected with long-term consequences.
Between 1962 and 1965 thirteen Indian girls from Kerala entered the Federation of the Sisters of St Lioba in Freiburg (Germany). In 1975 they returned to India and made a first foundation at Bhopal, the Priory of Ashirbhavan, raised to the rank of independent priory in 1992. The Congregation developed greatly in India, swarmed into nine dioceses in five states of India. It has twenty houses.
In 2014 the Sisters of St Lioba in India numbered 114, of whom 102 had made final profession. In 2018 the Congregation has 2 novices and 24 candidates
from different Indian states.
The sisters are aware of the need for a quality education for future generations, and education has become the primary apostolate of the Congregation.
The sisters make themselves available for the youth, organising youth camps and study seminars for boys and girls in rural areas and engaging in the pastorate of the young. Hostels and youth accommodation for students are concrete realisations of this work. To respond to the health needs of the poor in villages the Congregation has also developed dispensaries, a hospital apostolate and health institutions. Their centre for professional formation has formed about a hundred women and girls in sewing and painting. Many earn their living by this.
The noviciate of the Congregation is situated at the Mother House of the Congregation in Bhopal. Two novices will make their first profession in a few months, and 24 postulants will begin their noviciate in one year. Four sisters of the Congregation have devoted themselves to this group and are charged with their formation.
Most of the religious programmes (retreats, seminars, etc) of the Congregation occur at the Mother House; it is too small to accommodate in addition all the young people in formation. The sisters therefore aim to construct a building specially for the novices and postulants. It will include a chapel, refectory, kitchen, study-room and dormitory.
Requested amount: € 20,000.