A memorial service in honor of Sister Pauline Paraplackal was held on March 31st in Asha Kiran, Dharuhera. People from the surrounding villages, close associates of Sister Pauline from the market, the Contractors, Principals and teachers from the schools where the children of Asha Kiran are enrolled, Fathers and sisters from the nearby parishes and the convents, the CRI group from Biwadi, Rewadi and Gurgaon. About 55 people were present for the service. Apart from these the children and staff from Asha Niwas and SCNs from Karkadooma paid floral tribute and participated in the service.
The presence of representatives from the Indane Gas godown, Telephone office and local fruit shop as well as the Xerox shop spoke of the great influence Sister Pauline had on their lives. She has touched their hearts with her warm, gentle, friendly and “homey” approach. They also appreciated her sincere effort and hard work of the past five years and all that she did to get the Home for the children ready.
The Principal of Maharshi Dayanand School, the village Sar Panch, Rev. Timo, M.C, the CRI president from Gurgaon and Rev. John Ari, the Administrator and Superior of St. Xaviers Bewadi, spoke on the occasion of their experience with Sister Pauline. Everyone spoke of her simplicity, easily mixing and warm nature. The villagers, while we visited their home to invite them for the “Sraadh”, spoke without any exception that she was like one of their family members. They expressed their grief and some were shocked at her sudden demise and promised to be present for the memorial service of such a ” saintly person.”
According to the local people, she was committed fully to the mission and spent every bit of her time energy and life to construct the home for the children and saw to its completion. The Principal commented that she made endless amounts of visits to the various schools and placed the children in the best of the schools to educate them so that they could have a brighter future. She has accomplished her life’s purpose.
The Memorial service was followed by a purification ritual ( according to the local custom), blessing of the house and the room where Sister Pauline lived and the grave where she is laid to rest by Rev. Deonis, the Parish priest, Dharuhera. The function ended with a thanksgiving meal “Preeti Bhoj” which was shared by all of those who came from far and near, as well as our children from Asha Niwas and Asha Kiran (75 of them).
One of the Sisters remarked “Pauline is lucky to have such an honor. None of the Sisters ever had a memorial or Sraadh like this.”
True Sister Pauline, you deserve it! For you are the lucky one, the first one to be laid to rest in the soil you labored, and spent every bit of your energy and time towards the end of your life. May you continue to stay with us in spirit and intercede for us.
With fond memories,
Nirmala Mulackal, SCN