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Sr.Maria Bricarello

Died in Guwahati on Feb. 24, 1925

Sr. Maria Bricarello was the first missionary Daughter of Mary Help of Christians from the N.E. to return to the Father’s house, to receive the reward prepared for her dedicated life and service, as the Lord Jesus said: “He/she who loses his/her life for My sake will receive it back abundantly.”

Maria Bricarello was born at Chieri, Turin (Italy) on December 13, 1889. She joined the Institute at Turin but did her Novitiate at Chertsey, England and professed there on October 4, 1915. She was very intelligent and bright. She studied at Oxford and worked for the FMA Institute in England till November, 1923.

Her request to go to the missions was granted and when the Superiors decided to open the mission in Assam, she was called back to Italy to get ready to join the group headed by the valiant Sr. Innocenza Vallina. Much was expected of Sr. Maria Bricarello, as he was an ardent, generous soul, well equipped with spiritual and intellectual assets and she knew English very well.

When the Sisters reached Guwahati on December 8, 1923, Sr. Bricarello being the only one who knew English became the interpreter. A little later when the English section of the school was started, she took charge of the children of several Europeans, who had settled at Guwahati as officers of the Railway, Post and Telegraph departments, also of the tea estate managers. She was much appreciated by all. Though she was a teacher, she readily lent her hand to the household tasks and as soon as she learnt a few words in Hindi, she eagerly visited the villagers and the civil hospital. She became fluent in the language and could instruct, console and enlighten. She went from ward to ward and bed to bed.

She also helped to start the weaving school as she had learnt the art in her younger days at Chiere. She took to herself the charge of teaching English to the Sisters. Everything she touched prospered and the works progressed rapidly; but the Lord had other plans …… in one of her visits to the hospital she contracted smallpox and in 24 hours she was no more. At 2.30 a.m. of Feb. 24, 1925, she winged her way to Heaven.