Port au Prince, Haiti, Sep 7, 2016 / 12:52 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- As the world turned its focus on Rome for the canonization of Mother Teresa last weekend, another religious sister lost her life while caring for the poor in Haiti.
Sister Isabel Sola Macas, 51, from the Congregation of the Religious of Jesus and Mary, was killed while she was driving on the Port-au-Prince highways Sept. 2. Several unidentified individuals fired on the car in which she was traveling. The motive for the attack is still unknown, but attempted robbery is being considered.
Originally from Barcelona, Sister Isabel had worked in Haiti for at least eight years with the poorest and most disadvantaged. During the time she lived in the country, she survived the terrible earthquake that took place in January 2010 and left more than 200,000 dead. Following the earthquake, Sister Isabel had worked to help rebuild homes, rendered her services as a nurse, and tried to relieve the suffering of those who had undergone amputations because of the earthquake.
Sister Mónica Joseph, Superior General of the congregation, released a statement saying that all the sisters are “in a state of shock” about the news they have received “with great sadness and pain.” She asked for prayers for Sister Isabel, “for her family and the sisters in Haiti.”
The director of the Pontifical Missionary Works in Spain, Father Anastasio Gil, sent a message of condolence “on behalf of the 13,000 Spanish missionaries spread throughout the world,” joining in “the pain and prayers of Isabel Sola's family and of the Congregation of the Religious of Jesus and Mary, for the terrible murder of this missionary who was giving her life for the poorest, and which finally culminated in the shedding of her blood.”
Pope Francis asked for prayers for Sister Isabel before praying the Angelus on Sunday, following the canonization of Saint Teresa of Calcutta. He referenced “those who give themselves in service to their brothers and sisters in difficult and risky contexts. I am especially thinking of so many religious sisters who give their lives without reservations.”
The Holy Father asked for prayers “particularly for the Spanish missionary sister, Sister Isabel, who was murdered two days ago in the capital of Haiti, a very tired country, for which I am asking that such acts of violence cease and that there be greater security for all.”
Francis also asked people to remember “the other sisters who recently have suffered violence in other countries. We do this turning in prayer to the Virgin Mary, Mother and Queen of all saints.”
The Pope then thanked all the participants as the Mass for the canonization of Mother Teresa and entrusted to her protection those performing works of mercy, so that she may “teach them to contemplate and adore every day Jesus crucified, in order to recognize and serve him in the brothers and sisters in need.”