Jyoti & Alisha, first-year novices, share their experiences of a train journey during lockdown.

It was hard to say goodbye to those who are close to us. With a heavy heart we said goodbye to Chandapura and left for Mokama on 24 of June 2020 by a special train. We left the place with lots of fear and anxiety but the powerful support through prayers of our Sisters, all our fear and anxiety disappeared.

Our journey was very pleasant. We could sing hymns; recite the psalms and rosary as we enjoyed the food prepared by Sister Anice Vettukulam and the community in Chandapura. We had all the safety measures with us all the way to Mokama.

At first, some of us had a hard time wearing masks but some enjoyed it. Some enjoyed applying sanitizer and wearing gloves. It was really fun traveling by second AC for the first time. We are really grateful to the Congregation for taking care of us so well in different ways.

We were very delighted to meet with Sister Suchita Kullu at Danapur railway station, standing with an open umbrella to welcome us. We were so happy to see her with two jeeps. Soon we shifted our belongings into jeeps and proceeded to Mokama. It was raining cats and dogs. As though, it was waiting for us. Anyway, we enjoyed the heavy rain all the way to Mokama. “You brought good rain” said one of the second-year novices.

We really experienced God’s mighty hands all through our journey. Our life during quarantine will be unforgettable. It was really well arranged. We were in one of the quarters in Bethel, so beautifully set up with different things. Four corners of the rooms were speaking to us with beautiful messages. We had three books each to read and write down its summary. We were really well fed with different varieties of food, mangoes, and jackfruits.

Sister Suchita could come and see us every day to give us points for the day. We enjoyed doing all that as we spent our days in contemplation and solitude. Finally, we were welcomed on 5 July, Sunday afternoon with a meaningful prayer service. Sister Suchita, the novice director, called us to remember always that the place where we now enter is sacred ground, a place for growing in wisdom and knowledge of God through Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit whose love and guidance will be experienced constantly. We are filled with love and gratitude to God and each of you our dear Sisters and Associates.

The novitiate community is very happy to have one another group of 6 vibrant novices and that makes a total of 12 novices for the current year. The second-year Novices had been eagerly waiting for the first years. They left no stones unturned to welcome them. There was a lot of joy and enthusiasm in everything that they prepared for the welcoming ceremony. Our life goes on in deepening oneness in Christ for joyful commitment. The Bethel community enjoyed being together and taking some snaps in the afternoon.

Sister Suchita Kullu