After sister Aloysius’ departure

January 29th, 2013 No comments

Dear Friends,

The passing of time will help, as it always does, with curing the ache and healing the wounds left by Sister Aloysius’ departure and I am sure that in due time joy and gratitude will prevail in our remembrance of her.

Take from my heart all painful anxiety, let nothing sadden me but sin” prayed in her ‘Suscipe’ venerable Catherine McAuley, foundress of the ‘Sisters of Mercy’.

Let’s follow her wise exhortation.
We were glad to see at Sister Aloysus’ departure Service the extent of the appreciation she enjoyed. People of higher or lower standings, religious or lay, all paid their last tribute to ‘Sister’. From Great Britain travelled to Bucharest Father Colin Gordon (Scotland) and six friends from ‘Sisters of Mercy‘: Sr. Evelyn Gallager, Sr. Mary McGrath, Sr. Austin Costelo , Sr. Anna Maloney, Sr. Paula McGilloway, and Sr. Rose Carmel.
From the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Bucharest were there to attend the ceremony Bishop Cornel Damian, Fr. Farcaş Nicolae, six priests from the St. Theresa Church and the Seminary, nuns and choir of the Popeşti Leordeni Monastery and nuns from other orders from Bucharest. Their service and chanting will be not forgotten.

But none of those eager to accompany ‘Sister’ were more touched there than those whose ailments were comforted by her words and served by her body for so many years: the orphans, the elderly, the boys from Nazareth House, patients from Budimex Hospital, and many others. Together with the volunteers, nurses and doctors, also present at the service, they recreated for the last time the ‘mission field’ of our dear Sister, lined up in a ‘good bye’ ceremony in a sunny winter day.

We shall grieve indeed, over her departure, but not too much. For we know that: “He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning nor crying nor pain any more, for the former things have passed away.” Rev.21:4

With this thought in mind let’s carry on, dear friends, each of us, with a life she would smilingly approve.

Thank you,
Traian Despa

Sister Mary Aloysius Kiernan

January 23rd, 2013 No comments

Dear friends,

On the night 13/14th of January 2013 Sister Aloysius went to be with her Lord. She entered painlessly in that night (she confidently returned my ‘good night’ wish on the phone before she went to bed) to wake up in a glorious, never-ending morning.

As we all know, ‘sister’ –  that’s how everybody called her around here – won the respect of the grown-up and the love of the children. But not any children, those who were passed by almost everybody else’s love. The abandoned and the forgotten. So many of them breathed easier because she lived.

Now the time has come for her to rest.

May she rest in peace!

The love she earned in our hearts will never die.

Sister Mary Aloysius Kiernan dies at 89

Sister Mary Aloysius Kiernan dies at 89

The burial procession was held on Tuesday 22nd January 2013 at Saint Teresa of the Child Jesus Parish in Bucharest, Romania.


Traian Despa


A Letter from Bob Barr

We have just received this heart touching letter from Bob Barr, a good friend of Romanians in need and a longtime supporter of the Lawside Romania Project.

I was first interested in the poor of Romania in 1994. For fifteen consecutive years I went to help the poor there and my biggest passion was visiting children in the Oncology Department of Budimex (Marie Curie) Children’s Hospital in Bucharest.

Ill child with Sister Aloysius

Ill child with Sister Aloysius

I nursed my mother at home 35 years ago when she had terminal cancer and now my dear wife Ruth died on 2nd December 2010 with the same cruel problem. She did so much helping me to raise money and send boxes of clothes to Romania all these years. Now, I would like to give the financial support to furnish a much needed kitchen in the Oncology Department in her memory. This would be such a blessing for mothers who have to stay long-term with their ill children, many of them being on the “terminal line”.

Ill baby with Sister Aloysius

Ill baby with Sister Aloysius

I am so happy that everyone, including the Hospital Staff, agreed to call this kitchen “Ruth’s Kitchen”. I am so pleased that my daughters and family are with me in this project. For 16 or 17 years I have been selling goods at boot sales, many times at shops and churches. Goods donated by people who knew me. Every penny made went to help the poor families in Romania. Ever since my wife developed cancer in 2007 I continued sending boxes, money, etc.

I definitely intend to continue this work in the memory of Ruth – my dear wife – but more for the Glory of God.

Bob Barr