Sister Mary Vita of the Child Jesus
Institute No. 826

“There is nothing in all creation that will ever be able to separate us from the love of God.”
Rom 8: 39

These words of St Paul adopted by Sr Vita, nourished and sustained her all through life. Her spirituality was deeply rooted in the love of Christ Jesus, our Lord and having experienced His deep love, she in turn became an instrument of love to others.

Sr Mary Vita of the Child Jesus, nee Grace Elizabeth Pinto was born on 1st March 1927at Loretto to Mr Camil Pinto and Josephine Lobo. She was the second in the family of six children with 1 boy and 5 girls. She was blessed with a close-knit family. They looked up to her with great affection, respect and reverence. Frequent visits to her by her siblings, nephews, nieces and even grand nieces and nephews reflect the deep love and affection they had for her.

Sr Vita joined the Apostolic Carmel on 10th February 1949 and made her first profession on 16th February 1951. Thereafter her mission of love began from 1951 up to the age of 96 years with 71 years of religious life.

Her long relentless service in the vineyard of the Lord, marked with great love for God was commendable. Joy in service was the motto of her life. She accepted the work assigned to her in God’s house, with an attitude of resignation and willingness of heart. Running the kitchen department, a task she fulfilled, with love, perfection and discipline, in places wherever she was sent. And she found her deep joy of serving the Lord with this humble service of Martha. Hers had been a life of loving service from dawn to dusk fulfilling the clarian call to love.

Sr Vita offered her service at various places namely St Maria Goretti Convent, Kemmannu, St Teresa’s Convent, Cannanore, Christ King Convent, Tambaram, Annunciation Convent, Mangalore, Carmel Convent, Moodbidri and St Cecily’s Convent, Udupi wherein she spent her final years from 1990 .

She accepted life as the greatest gift from God and her sole passion was to live a life of love for God and others, radiating joy, bringing warmth and sunshine to others. She was the loving and loveable person of the community. Sisters flocked around her after the school hours to spend a few moments in fun and relaxation. She loved the company of sisters and looked forward with eagerness to meet them.

She had a soft corner for the poor. The domestic staff found great joy to work with her. She communicated to them in the language of tenderness and compassion, showed great concern in their welfare and treated them with respect.

Contemplating and spending time in nature was her passion. She was able to perceive his eternal presence, power and beauty in every part of His magnificent creation. She found boundless joy in planting, nurturing and caring for plants and animals. Working with nature to maintain a clean and green surrounding, and produce healthy fruits and vegetables , she did it all with tremendous joy and love.

The more we reflect , the greater we appreciate God’s blessings in our lives. Her life was a life of gratitude. To every act of kindness done to her, she would express her gratitude with great tenderness of heart. She held on to the flame of loyalty , loving obedience and found peace and serenity in carrying out God’s will, manifested through the instrumentality of her superiors.

She never sought the limelight but reflected Lord’s hiddenness and obscurity through her simple and humble ways. At St Cecily’s she would faithfully spend long hours in prayer, take care of the house while sisters were in the school, welcome the guests and visitors with great warmth , offering her service as receptionist at the parlour with an ever angelic smile. Never did she entertain any negative talk about the other. She proved to be a simple and contented religious with hardly any needs.

Her patience and power of endurance was tested 3 years ago , when the Lord visited her with a cross on her shoulders, in the shape of a fall and was thereafter confined to bed. All of us were edified to see her spirit of quiet surrender, to the call of the master, to participate in his passion. There was never a complaint or a negative word on her lips. He purified her in the crucible of suffering towards the end of her life. Her last days were marked with excruciating pain. Sisters used to take turns, to pray the evening prayer with her. Our devoted domestic staff Salma was available round the clock to attend on her. When she had taken a bad turn, she was administered the Sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick, five times by the former and present Parish Priests, Fr Valerian Mendonca and Fr Charles Menezes. On the previous day of her final going, her verbal communication had stopped. With a peaceful surrender, she winged her flight to God at 8 pm on 29, June 2022.

On the following day, 30 June , her mortal remains were brought to the convent chapel around 1p.m. Our dear Bishop Rt Rev. Dr Jerald Isaac Lobo celebrated the Holy Eucharist along with three other concelebrants at 4.00 p. m .The Parish Priest Rev Fr Charles Menezes preached a meaningful homily. Our Provincial Superior, Sr Shamita, Sisters from the province, staff, relatives, ACAs and parishioners bid her a respectful goodbye. Her nephew Mr Roshan Pinto proposed the vote of thanks on behalf of the community and family. Her mortal remains were laid to rest at our convent cemetery at 5.00 p.m.

Our sincere thanks to our dear Bishop Rt Rev. Gerald Isaac Lobo and the clergy for their pastoral presence, the Superior General Sr Maria Nirmalini and her team for their prayers, the Provincial Superior, Sr Maria Shamita and her council for their visits and supportive presence, the staff of Hi-tech Hospital for their ever ready service, domestic staff Salma, for her tender care.

Thank you dear sister, for the life of love , you lived and shared with us and the legacy, you have left behind. May you be a powerful intercessor, for the Apostolic Carmel, for your dear ones and for all those who crossed your path, while you were here on earth.

A tribute of love and fond remembrance from the sisters of St Cecily’s Convent, Udupi.

Name in religion : Sr Mary Vita of the Child Jesus
Maiden name : Grace Elizabeth Pinto
Inst. No. : 826
Date of Birth : 01-03-1927
Date of entrance to Postulancy : 10-02-1949
Date of first Profession : 16-02-1951
Date of Final Profession : 19-05-1956
Date of Decease : 29-06-2022
Date of Burial : 30-06-2022
Place of Burial : St. Cecily’s Convent Cemetery, Udupi

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