Allahabad Province Congregation of Jesus
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A Loving Tribute to Sr. Julia D’Cunha C J (1938 – 2021)
  • Event Date: 12-May-2021
  • Updated On: 12-May-2021
  • Total Photo(s): 38
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Description: ‘Come my beloved daughter, Enter into the kingdom prepared for you by my Father.’ By 7.30 p.m. on11th May 2021, Sr. Julia saw Jesus, Mary and Joseph standing near her with open arms to receive her into eternity with these warm, welcome words and at that moment sister bowed her head to this all-embracing invitation. During the days of her illness, she had envisaged it and often repeated, “Jesus, Mary and Joseph will come to take me to my real home heaven for ever. What a peaceful, beautiful home going! Benedicta D’Cunha D/o Late Mrs. & Mr. Aloysius D’Cunha was born on 10th March 1938 in Bijai, Mangalore, as the youngest daughter among their 5 children and was fondly called Benny. The D’Cunha family was a staunch, Catholic one, with devout parents and well-knit siblings. That is the reason why little Benny blossomed into such a lovely flower. The heavens rejoiced at her birth and over joyed on her confirmation day on 23rd September 1946. In 1956, at the tender age of eighteen, young Benny heard a whisper, “I have chosen you, I have loved you, you are mine.” She recognised that the call was from none other than Jesus, and decided to follow Him and Him alone. With unwavering steps and undaunted courage, Benedicta D’Cunha (that was her Baptismal name), entered the portals of IBMV, (now known as CJ,) and followed steadily the footsteps of her Master. She entered the Novitiate after acquiring the needed training in the Institute assuming the name Sr. M. Julia IBMV in1958. Once put her hands to the plough, she never turned back. She made her first Profession in 1960 and the Final Vows in 1966. Ever since, she lived true to her calling till her departure to eternity. A committed, inspiring life indeed! One of the many talents Sr. Julia possessed was her passion for music. It is said, “Once singing is equal to thrice praying.” And sister sang through life till she was totally bed ridden. On 14th April 2021, still moving about in wheel chair, she yielded to the request of the young sisters during recreation, to sing the ancient Easter Hymn, “Regina Ceili”, for they wanted to learn it. Sr. Julia willingly sang it softly, but clearly, “Regina Ceili Latare…….” It sounded angelic and heavenly. When her ability to speak did not support her anymore, she called out, “Sister….sister….” in her feeble voice. When a sister responded to her call, she said, “Please pray with me.” Who could resist such a request? Towards the end of that week, that voice too grew weaker and finally was silenced. We felt that it was a warning and she was administered “The anointing of the sick,” during which she responded to every prayer softly. Her home going was expected any time. Hence, we were with her round the clock. So much so when the angel of peace came to take her home, all of us were around her entreating the Lord to relieve her of the pain and struggle. So without much alarm, before anyone could realize that she had taken wings, she breathed her last and became one with her Lord and Master. Thank you Lord for granting our dear Sr. Julia a pain-free, peaceful and graceful death. Sr. Julia had great devotion to St. Joseph. Half wittingly she used to tell us,” please ask St. Joseph to prepare my coffin soon; he was a carpenter, so it is easy for him,” Sure enough, St. Joseph took her seriously and gave her a happy death on Tuesday late in the evening, giving us ample time to get the coffin ready for her funeral on Wednesday, St. Joseph’s day. When on earth, Joseph obeyed Heaven without any question or hesitation. Now Heaven will obey St. Joseph without any delay - a blessed assurance for all. Sr. Julia’s life was an eventful one. Her taste and talents were tapped and nurtured by her superiors and sent her to different Institutions in Patna, Jhansi, Kanpur and Allahabad to complete her studies in Western Music. As a full-fledged music teacher she took up Music as her special mission. Her nimble fingers and melodious voice trained many a young boy and girl in Kanpur, Lucknow, Bangalore, Jhansi and continued to do so, till she got retired in 2012 in Lucknow. Perfection was etched into her blood. Nothing less than the best satisfied her because she wanted to gift the best of everything to her Divine Master. Often she was immersed in Church Choir, perfecting it. Sister excelled in church singing, concert practices and class room lessons. She followed ‘Time Spirituality’ quite strictly and encouraged the youngsters to utilise time well by reading good books and articles such as ‘Soldiers of God, Inspirational Quotes’ etc. She travelled that extra mile to visit families and inquire about the well-being of teachers, students, workers and their family members. ‘Love knows no burden’, was her motto. A fatal fall and injury caused by it restricted her movements, though otherwise enjoyed normal health. Her sense of humour continued even when she was incapacitated. Yes, Sister Julia, your focus was heaven and you strove for our eternal home throughout your life, “Our homeland is in heaven and from heaven comes the saviour we are awaiting.”(Phil 3: 20). We, your sisters, family and friends thank you for the committed life you lived and the courage you instilled in us by facing life with all odds. Your memories will linger on in our minds as we lovingly remember your humorous ways, wonderful talents, compassionate heart and a brighter outlook on life. By your passing away, we have lost a genuine friend, a source of inspiration and a kind hearted companion. As we bid goodbye to you, we are consoled that we have a powerful intercessor in heaven. The legacy you have left behind will continue to drive us on towards perfection. We pray that the One whom you loved and served, welcome you and adorn you with the crown of glory. Goodbye, Sr. Julia, till we meet again in eternity. With precious memories of you, St. Mary’s community, Lucknow.