Sr. Francisca Phiri interview with the congregation’s Media Team

Sr Francisca Phiri

Posted | 31 January 2023 17:00 CAT

Share your name, when and where you born
My name is Sr. Francisca Chiyanjano Phiri. I was born in 1952 at St. Joseph’s Mission, Chikungu in the Diocese of Chipata.

Kindly share your education background before joining the congregation
I attended a primary school in Chikungu which was ran by the Mary Immaculate Conception Sisters of Canada and I did my secondary school at Chadiza Secondary School.

How did you find yourself on your journey with the congregation, what led you to join
The name itself Daughters of the Redeemer attracted me to join.

The slogan which I came across in a circular when the congregation was beginning led me to join, it read as follows: “We are selling God, the price is love. Do not be ashamed of your Christianity, come and be a Daughter of the Redeemer”.

To me this was enough attraction and still stands even today.

When did you join, share when you made your first profession and perpetual vows
I attended the summer school at Roma Girls Secondary School in August 1970 during my school holiday. At this summer school a number of congregations were promoting vocations for girls to join them. After completing my secondary school education in December 1970 I joined the Daughters of the Redeemer.

I made my first profession on 3rd January 1976 and took my perpetual vows on 2nd January 1996.

Kindly share your apostolic life (where you have worked) in the congregation
I worked at the Catholic Secretariat in Lusaka for 3 years as a newly professed sister.

I did Spiritual Studies at Miltown Park in Ireland for 1 year and moved to do Religious Sciences at Regina Mundi in Rome, Italy for 4 years.

I worked at Young Women’s Christian Association (YWCA) in Lusaka for 10 years. My work was focused on Gender Based Violence (GBV) and YWCA was the first NGO to introduce safe shelters for women and children who had suffered violence and abuse in their homes.

I worked in Chibomba and was transferred to Malawi where I stayed for a few months and came back.

Most of my religious years had to do with formation work.

Sr Francisca (far left) during the Congregation’s golden jubilee celebration in 2019
Superior General Sr Prisca Matenga (right) visiting Sr Francisca in Rome while she was recuperating from an operation
At the Vatican

Looking back, kindly share your experience as a religious sister and what advice do you have for young girls contemplating to joining religious life especially your congregation
To be a Religious is a call, a vocation. Just like with other types of callings, it has its own ups and downs.

Prayer to me is central, it has made me be connected to Jesus the Redeemer at every level of my life.

Through community living I have appreciated others and their giftedness.

Determination, perseverance and remaining focused has helped me to be where I am today. To the girls contemplating to join religious life, they have to know what they want in life and stick to it.

Sr Francisca with the Chelstone Parish matrons and youths at Mount Zion during their retreat in 2009
Sr Francisca with former Vice President Mrs Inonge Wina at YWCA anniversary celebration in 2022
Sr Francisa in prayer in the Chapel

Any other remarks
Prayer, Mass and receiving Jesus in the Eucharist and reading of spiritual books has been very helpful to me.

God’s grace is always there if we mean what we say and that is our continuous YES to His calling.

I am a proud Daughter of the Redeemer.