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Marie Fernanda Laini

List of deceased Sisters

Date of death 09/08/2012

Aware of our own poverty,
we continually look to Mary
for inspiration, help and renewed strength
in all circumstances
and at every stage of life.
With her we move forward in faith,
welcoming the unexpected,
certain of God’s guidance.
In fidelity to the Spirit,
we shall discover
Mary’s way of loving and serving,
so as to be a little of her presence
in the world (Const. 10).


Sister Marie Fernanda, Ippolita Rosa Laini, was born in Pisogne (85), March 14, 1915 of Pietro and Caterina Fenaroli.

At the age of 9 she lost her mother. “From that day, she confided to me one day – I said to the Virgin Mary, ‘You will now be my mother’.”

She was 14 years old when she felt a growing desire to consecrate herself to the Lord and to become a missionary. At that time the Marist Fathers visited “La Valle Comonica” regularly and this gave her the opportunity to get to know the Missionary Sisters of the Society of Mary.

A few years passed before she could go to Lyon for her religious formation. It was very difficult for her to leave her father who was alone to care for five children. At first, her father did not give her permission to leave but afterwards, he was struck by her firm purpose and he finally decided to allow her to leave.

Sr M. Fernanda entered the Postulate at Ste Foy-les-Lyon in June 1938. She made her profession on September 8, 1940. Because World War II has started in 1939 she had to remain in Lyon. During that time, she accompanied an elderly lady.

In January 1946, she went to Italy to assist Sr M. Giuseppina in Bedizzole (BS) at the first smsm Postulate in Italy. She was a pioneer from France into Italy. At the end of that same year, on December 8, she made her Final Vows.

During 1948 she was missioned to New Caledonia where she remained until 1960. During those years, she served at the mission stations of: St. Louis, Pouebo, Touho, Thio, Bourail. She taught sewing and was matron of the Girls’ Hostel.

In July 1960, after twelve years of mission service, she returned to France for a Spiritual Renewal and remained in France for the next two years.

In April 1963, she returned to New Caledonia and was interim superior at Bourail as Sr Solange was leaving for the General Chapter. When Sr Solange returned from the Chapter, she was missioned to the community of St. Louis as Superior.

In 1967 she went to Sydney, Australia for four months for medical attention. Upon her return she was assigned to La Foa. From 1968 to 1973, she served in many mission stations from Kone to Noumea.

She returned to Italy in 1973. From 1974-1976, she contributed generously to the beginnings of Paul VI Center in Brescia.

In February, 1977 she once again returned to New Caledonia in the community of Bourail. In 1982 she went on her home visit for a few months and returned to New Caledonia and served as matron at the SMSM Hostel in Noumea.

From 1983-1988 she served in the Missions of: Ouvea, Mont-Mou and Thio.

Sr M. Fernanda gave the gift of her life especially in the Missions of New Caledonia. She was always available to give her services wherever she was asked. She was loved by all whom she encountered who shared their worries with her and she in turn was very compassionate.

In 1988 she returned to Italy and was officially transferred to the Province of Italy/Rwanda. Sr M. Fernanda manifested her excellent and creative gift of embroidery and made use of it at every opportunity especially for feast days and for Christmas decorations

We thank you Sr M. Fernanda for your joy and humor amid your precarious health condition due to the many years you served so generously in New Caledonia. We remember your smile which captivated so many people and was a true sign of your openness and availability to share in depth.

Your alertness and moral strength accompanied you to the very end. We thank the Lord for your fidelity to prayer which nourished you and for the generous gift of your life your which your renewed daily.

We bid you farewell Fernanda, and now that you are near the Lord and our Mother, pray for all of us who continue our journey for the coming of the Kingdom.

Sister Marie Fernanda died in Brescia on August 9, 2012

Sr Grazia Anna Morelli, smsm
Provincial Superior