Beatification of the Daughters of Divine Love. Sarajewo, 24 IX 2011
S. Zofia Szymanek FDC
On 14 January 2011 Holy Father Benedict XVI signed a decree ending the beatification process of the five martyrs - sisters from Pale, of the World War II. The sisters belonged to the Convent of the Daughters of Divine Love. The sisters' martyred way was presented in our 31st edition of ,,Niedziela'' on 31 July 2011. On the same page there's more information on their profiles. Pale is a village situated 18 km in the East from Sarajevo. In 1911 the Sisters of the Convent of the Daughters of Divine Love settled there. 1941 was the year of Nazi occupation in Yugoslavia and a civil war during which Serbian Chetniks were murdering civilian population, Catholics and Muslims. On 11 December 1941 Chetniks soldiers attacked a monastery in Pale in which there four sisters then: 76 - year old Austrian sister Berchmana, 56-year old Slovenian sister Krizina Bojanc, 34-year old Slovenian sister Antonija Fabjan and 29-year old Croatian Banja. At the same time 49-year old Croatian sister Jula Ivanievic, Mother Superior of the Convent was coming back from shopping. She could escape to save herself - instead she chose martyrdom and joined her community.
The sisters surrounded by Serbian soldiers were abducted to Gordaze (63 km from Pale) and their monastery burst into flames. They arrived there on 15 December. They were closed in military barracks. Whereas the Chetniks ate their supper and, being drunk, returned to the room where the sisters were closed. First, they were forced to unfrock themselves, the sisters firmly refused to. They were constantly repeating that they had vowed to God. Then they were only calling for help and repeating the words of the prayer: 'Jesus, Maria, Joseph'. The soldiers started to beat each sister. When it did not help to break the nuns' resistance, the Chetniks decided to rape them. At that moment sister Jula opened a window and shouted: 'Sisters, follow me! Jesus, save us!' and jumped out. So did other sisters. Furious soldiers randomly were stabbing the sisters' bodies. The dead bodies were dragged towards the shore of a Drina river where they were thrown by a Chetnik undertaker after two days. The beatification process of the sisters will taka place on 4 December 1999 and in 2003 it was accepted in Rome. The Beatification Celebrations will be held on 24 December 2011 in Sarajevo.
Daughters of Divine Love
The Convent of the Daughters of Divine Love was founded in Vienna on 21 November in 1868 by God's servant Franciszka Lechner. Sisters took up educational work among children and young people. Don't be afraid of God's love which calls you! We preach this love while working among children and the youth in Poland and in missionary outposts in Bolivia, Uganda and Ukraine. If God's look of love rested also on you, if you feel a desire in your heart to do good, give joy, make others happy and lead others to Heaven - don't be afraid to trust and undertake a challenge of your vocation. Christ is with you! Father watches over you!
Girls who want to strengthen their life of belief and prayer are invited for retreats:
5-6 October 2011, 3-4 December 2011.
Please contact with: s. Justyna Lampa, 16 Pędzichów St,31-152 Cracow, tel. 503-557-948. firstname.lastname@example.org