SOMALIA: Pope Approves Cause of Saint of Consolata Sister Killed in Mogadishu

MOGADISHU NOVEMBER 10, 2017(CISA)-Pope Francis has authorized the Congregation for the Causes of Saints to promulgate Decree of Sr Leonella Rosa Sgorbati of Consolata Missionaries who was assassinated on September 17, 2006 in Mogadishu.

Pope Francis made the announcement on November 8 in audience with Cardinal Angelo Amato, S.D.B — Prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints.

In a phone interview with CISA today, Sr Joan Agnes Matimu, Consolata Sisters Regional Superior said that Pope’s decree was a great joy to the congregation and had created a challenge to them.

“This is a big joy for us the Consolata sisters. Just a few years ago, the Lord gifted us with Blessed Irene ‘Nyaatha’ and then here comes Sr Leonella who was one of us, she was someone we knew very well. She had lived with us, we shared life together,” said Sr Joan.

“She (Sr Leonella) is challenging us and telling us that we can all be saints, she is challenging us to take that path of walking with Christ. Her martyrdom did not begin on that day that she was shot. It literally ended a life lived as a gift,” added Sr Joan.

She noted that the fact that Sr Leonella agreed to go and work in Somalia, “knowing the danger that she could meet was a sign that she had already given her life for the sake of love and for the sake of the kingdom and what happened was a conclusion of a pact made by God.”

Born Rosa Sgorbati in Italy, Sister Leonella lived and worked in Kenya and Somalia for 38 years.

She and her bodyguard were shot as both walked the nine meters from the Mogadishu hospital to the sister’s home, where three other nuns were waiting to have lunch with her.

She was buried at Nazareth Hospital cemetery on September 21, 2006.

Pope also declared the martyrdom of Servant of God John Paul I (Albino Luciani), Supreme Pontiff, born on October 17, 1912 in Forno di Canale, Servant of God Giovanni Brenner of Hungary, Blessed Bernardo of Baden, Marquis of Baden born in Germany, Servant of God Gregorio Fioravanti (né Lodovico), professed priest of the Order of Friars Minor, born in Italy, Servant of God Tomás Morales Pérez, professed priest of the Company of Jesus.

Others include Servant of God Marcellino da Capradosso (né Giovanni Maoloni), professed layperson of the Order of Friars Minor Capuchin; born on September 22, 1873 in Villa Sambuco di Castel di Lama and Servant of God Teresa Fardella De Blasi, widow and founder of the Institute of the Poor Daughters of the Crowned Virgin; born in New York, United States of America.