Sister Maria Agustine is one of 625 Medical Mission Sisters in 17 nations trying to be present to others in the spirit of Jesus the Healer.
Sister Maria Agustine was born the fourth child in a Muslim family in Solo in Central Java, Indonesia. She studied at Catholic elementary and high schools run by the Franciscan Sisters. “I was attracted to the Catholic faith and wanted to become a Catholic, but my parents forbade it,” Sister recalls.
At nursing boarding school at Holy Family Hospital, Sister Maria Agustine became a Catholic without telling her family. She was drawn to the Medical Mission Sisters’ way of life, and joined our Community in Solo. She made her First Vows in 1978, and her Final Vows in 1985. “Still Muslim, my mother and family came to join our celebration. I felt very happy,” she remembers.
Sister Maria Agustine has been involved in a variety of healing ministries. She worked with the social service group of the Vicariate of Surakarta to empower people, and also did vocation promotion work. In 1996, she was appointed Formation Coordinator while continuing her social service ministry.
In Kedung Ombo, Central Java, Sister Maria Agustine ministered in a program for improving children’s nutrition and health. She also was active in Panti Wredha, a new home for the elderly that was established in Solo. She shares, “The elderly need friends in the process of aging, attention, and love … they need to be accompanied, to be heard, to be respected, to be helped, and to be served.”
Sister then served at Fatima Hospital in Parepare, Indonesia. She began in the nutrition department, then had charge of the kitchen, laundry and sewing areas, and later, was general cashier of the hospital. In addition, she taught first semester nursing students at the Nursing Academy of Fatima.
Sister Maria Agustine recently began her elected term as our District Coordinator in Indonesia. “I have now been a Medical Mission Sister for 32 years, and I ask God’s guidance in this new task of district leadership.”
July 1, 2010