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Sister Marie Christiane Emery (Jacqueline Marie Emery)

List of Deceased Sisters

Date of Death 25/06/2022

Sister Marie Christiane Emery smsm (Jacqueline Marie Emery)

Born: 16/10/1937

Professed: 09/03/1950

Died: 25/06/2022

Jacqueline Marie was born on September 2, 1927, in Lyon, to François EMERY and Germaine de BOISSIEU. She was the fifth in a family of six children.

In 1945, with her baccalaureate in hand after finishing high school, she wanted to join the Missionary Sisters of the Society of Mary, but her father asked her to wait until she was 20. In 1944, the formation house had been evacuated to Isère because of the war. It was therefore at Gémens that she began her postulancy on September 10, 1947. On entering the novitiate on April 16, 1948, she received the name of Sister Marie Christiane. She made profession on March 9, 1950. She made her perpetual vows in Bourail on March 9, 1956.

In fact she had arrived in New Caledonia on July 24, 1950 with S. M. Erwan, S. M. Manuella and five other SMSM’s. Then she began her life as a teacher in Bourail, in Thio, (where she was named superior for the first time), and finally in Tyé.

In 1964, she had her first leave in France and studied theology at the Catholic University of Lyon.  On August 20, 1966, she returned to Oceania, to the school at Canala. She was appointed as a regional councillor.At the start of the 1969 school year, she took over the management of the school at La Foa. That year, having studied by correspondence, she passed the Certificat d’Aptitude Pédagogique.

In December 1973, when she arrived home to visit her family, she had the grief of losing her sister Hélène and her brother-in-law Bernard in a car accident. She remained that year with her nephews and nieces, who have always been grateful to her. She made a thirty-day retreat in Italy before returning to Thio in February 1975, to continue as school director.

In 1980, she helped in the secretariat of the General Chapter in Rome. In September that year, she was at “41” Sainte-Foy for a refresher course in Bible and Catechesis. In 1981, she set out again, this time to Wallis as director of the school in Mua. In 1985, after a brief stint in Pouébo, which she left because of events, she was head of the school in Ouvéa then in Koné. She was a delegate to the Provincial Chapter. On May 5, 1988, she came to France, for home leave and retraining, notably in Clermont-Ferrand for three months of initiation to computers and accounting. In 1989, she was back in Nouméa at the Vallée des Colons, where the young sisters took advantage of her help for their studies.

On January 1, 1993, she arrived in the community of Mont-Mou, until her definitive return to France in 1995, where she became superior of the house of “41”. In France as in Oceania, S. M. Christiane was very close to all her co-workers, trusting them and seeking to help each one. Although at first, she could give the impression of being stern, she hid a good and generous heart.

In 2003, she joined the sisters of La Fare-les-Oliviers for the same activities, and then she continued these at the provincial house in Bron in 2006. In 2008, after a stay in hospital, she returned to “41”. She participated in community tasks. A friend remembers that she was on duty at the door and on the phone, always knitting, and that she was very welcoming. Many elderly people in Sainte-Foy appreciated her visits, which brought comfort in their loneliness.

Little by little, her eyesight diminished: she could no longer read. Yet for several years, she went every week to take biblical or theological training courses at Saint-Bonaventure. She loved her hometown. It was a pleasure for people to listen to her talk about Lyon. She would go to the public garden behind the church to admire the scenery and to chat with people walking by. Later, she would sit in our garden to rest and pray while contemplating her city. Gradually, her strength declined. Soon, she forgot everything, but not her rosary, to which she remained faithful until the end. At the office, she recited the psalms from memory. She was very interested in everything that happened in the community.

She was very attached to her family, and they loved her. It was a great joy for her to be in contact often with her many nephews and nieces, on the telephone or in the parlour. This Saturday, June 25, she got up as she did every day, and she had lunch with the sisters. In the afternoon, she had severe pain in her chest. She was taken to the emergency room at St Joseph St Luke Hospital. She died at 9:50 p.m. We really miss Sr. Marie Christiane. But we know that she wanted with all her heart to be with her Lord, and that she now has the joy of being able to contemplate Him for eternity.

“You know, I gave Him my whole life, I served Him the best I could, I would like to see His face!” she often said.

The Sisters of “41”