[Province Graz – Central Europe]
The request was accepted by the bishop of the diocese of Graz-Seckau, Austria on September 16, 2016. The Procurator General, Fr. Shijo Kanjirathamkunnel CM, presented the request and corresponding documentation in the name of and presence of the Superioress General of the Sisters of Mary of the Miraculous Medal, the new Postulator, Sr. Magda, Sister of Mary of the Miraculous Medal of Kiev (appointed by our Superior General as her replacement), Sr. Kristina, the secretary, one translator and Sr. Christa for the Daughters of Charity. Going forward from that date, “Mother Brandis” may be invoked as a “Servant of God.”
An image of Mother Brandis with a prayer in Slovenian, Croatian and German has been distributed; other languages will follow. She is a great example of faith in divine providence, of love for those who are poor and of her love of obedience. “If the good Lord wants it, then I also want it!” she often said, as well as, “Lord, make our community of one heart and may it always be in accord with your heart,” and again, “Lord, you know all that will happen today, I offer it to you in advance, I praise you for all sufferings and all joy.”
Research and document classification are intensifying: her own writings, testimonies, letters, lists of missions, even if many of these historic records had been destroyed during the bombings of 1944-1945.
Who is Sr. Léopoldine, Mother Josepha Brandis (1815 – 1900)?
Here is a short biography:
Mother Josepha was born on 27 November 1815 in Graz. In 1837, guided by the bishop of the diocese, she entered the Company of the Sisters of Charity of St. Vincent de Paul in Munich. In 1841 the Sisters returned to Graz to begin serving the sick at the city hospital. In 1843, Sr. Léopoldine became General Superior of the Sisters of Charity in Graz. Many young women asked to join this new community that served the sick.
Her desire to live according to the original regulations of Saint Vincent and of the Company of the Daughters of Charity was completed in 1850/1851. The group of Sisters, who already numbered around 80, were joined to our Company and Sr. Léopoldine was named Visitatrice.
Sr. Léopoldine engaged in the service of the poor all her life. The services multiplied as did the difficulties. In response to the impossibility of taking care of the sick in their homes, she founded a kind of association of young women for this service. This became the beginning of the foundation of the Sisters of Mary of the Miraculous Medal, recognized as a congregation in 1925.
At the time of her death, the province had about 2700 Sisters and 210 houses. She is interred in the crypt of the Provincial House. She remains a shining example of fidelity, obedience and charity.