At 93 years and eight months old, Sister Patricia Lupanga died on Thursday morning, June 2 2016 a symbol of strong faith, after living a purposeful vocation as a Teresian nun for 73 years.
Hers was an emotional departure when she told a nurse attending to her at Likuni Mission Hospital in Lilongwe on that fateful day: “Go and rest, I want to rest too”, and before the nurse turned the corner, Mayi Pati, as she was fondly called, breathed her last. She left her fellow Teresian Sisters, relatives and friends celebrating a life of a nun well-lived.
Many enough lessons had been learnt from her life that during a requiem mass presided over by Archbishop of Lilongwe Tracisius Ziyaye, at Mlare Parish on June 4, the messages were nothing short of comforting all and sundry to recognise their call in life and live it to the fullest.
In his homily during the mass, Rev Father Paul Kalemba of Chiphwanya Parish in Dedza Diocese, where Sister Lupanga retired to in 2001—said she was a touching example for all to emulate.
“Her life has preached to us about faith, let us be ready to remain steadfast in our vocations,” said Father Kalemba who was among 25 priests who joined the archbishop in celebrating the mass.
Mother general of the Teresian Sisters, Sister Clementia Mkandira said Mayi Pati was a role model in the congregation.
“From her life, we have all learnt that it is possible to remain committed to one’s calling till death. We are thankful to God for the gift of her life among us. May her soul rest in eternal peace,” she said.
Born on September 27 1922, Sister Lupanga came from Fumba Village in Traditional Authority (T/A) Tambala in Dedza. She joined the Teresian Sisters noviciate in 1941 and took her first vows on October 2 1943.
As a teacher, she worked at Catholic institutions at Nambuma and Likuni in Lilongwe, and Bembeke and Mtendere in Dedza. She also served at Mtima Woyera Parish in Lilongwe before retiring to Chiphwanya Parish.
She was the sixth-born in a family of 14—all of whom were long dead. Ironically, her mother died a centenarian, at 104, in 1985. n