“Many among these (immigrants) are Christians and for them, the Sisters are a source of comfort and spiritual support,” the Church aid organization explains.
Sr. Martine explained to ACN leadership that the female Christian presence in Tamanrasset is important, because women can go into the families in the hugely Islam country and thereby have access to all levels of the Muslim population, “particularly the poorest and neediest.”
“The women, the children and especially those suffering various handicaps are very many,” the nun explains, adding that their pastoral work in the country includes counselling and supporting women and conducting home, hospital and prison visits.
The duties of the nuns extend to helping in administrative and medical matters and at times conducting funerals and other festivities in the diocese that experiences a shortage of ordained ministers.
For the Little Sisters of the Sacred Heart Congregation, ACN leadership says, it is a priority to re-establish a real presence and spirit of Christian and feminine fraternity in Tamanrasset, noting the challenge of maintaining “a female Christian presence” in one of Africa’s most isolated Catholic dioceses that has been set apart from the rest of the world by a desert.