Sister Mary Prema

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Fast Facts
sister mary prema.jpg
Other Names and Nicknames: 
Mechthild Pierick
Christianity, Missionaries of Charity
Main Countries of Activity: 
Date of Birth: 
May 13, 1953.
Place of Birth: 
In His/Her Body ("alive"): 
Other Related Gurus: 
Sister Joseph, Sister Johanne, Sister Adriana, Sister Joseph-Maria


The newly elected superior- general of the Missionaries of Charity (MC), Sister Mary Prema, said she would follow in the footsteps of Mother Teresa in leading the order’s activities.

“Mother Teresa had set the path, Sister Nirmala had followed in her own way, and I will follow, too. God will show me the way, step by step,” she said, addressing the media for the first time.

Sister Prema has spent her time since her election on assessing the MC’s activities with the new general councillors — Sister Joseph from Kerala, Sister Johanne from Delhi, Sister Adriana from Italy and Sister Joseph-Maria from Australia.

The number of MC volunteers in India has declined over the past few years but Sister Prema is confident that the youth will show an interest in serving the poor.

“I have great faith that the youth of today will dedicate their lives in the service of the poor and to God,” she said.

Sister Prema joined the order in 1980 after meeting Mother Teresa in Berlin and has been living in Calcutta since 2001.

She was a member of the General Chapter that elected Sister Nirmala as the Mother’s successor in 1997. She first met Sister Nirmala in 1983. For the past six years, she has served in Mother House, working closely with Sister Nirmala as one of the four general councillors.

“Sister Nirmala will always be a big sister and will continue to inspire and advise us, and as for Mother Teresa, she is still with us, spiritually,” she said.

Born on May 13, 1953, in Reken, Westfalia, Germany, she was named Mechtilide Pierick by her farmer parents.

“I was born in the countryside and I have an elder brother and a twin sister. Both are married with children,” she smiled.

Sister Prema came to know about Mother Teresa after reading Something Beautiful For God by Malcolm Muggeridge.

“I was so impressed, especially with the pictures of Mother House and the sisters washing clothes. I knew then that I would join MC and serve the poorest of the poor,” she said.

She is trained as a teacher for handicapped children and has worked in a school.

“I want to get to know our work and our communities in India over the next six years. The priority will be to meet more people,” she said, talking about her vision for the future of the MC.

Asked about the recent violence against Christians, she said: “We suffer, we pray and we stand together with those persecuted, and we forgive those who persecuted them.”

Asked when Mother Teresa will be declared a saint, Sister Prema smiled and repeated the Mother’s words. “It will happen in God’s own time. God has predestined the time for canonisation for Mother Teresa.”



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