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Birth: 1860

Death: 1943


As the only child of a widowed mother, Mary Josephine Caroline Brader, of Kaltbrunn, Switzerland, excelled in school, meanwhile developing a deep devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary. At the age of twenty, she entered a cloistered convent of Third Order Franciscan nuns, taking the name Mary Caritas. When several years later the bishop of Portoviejo, Ecuador appealed to her convent for volunteers to work as missionary sisters in his diocese, Sister Caritas eagerly offered herself, and was sent to Ecuador with five others. Experiencing first hand the Ecuadorians’ need for missionary laborers, she thereafter founded a new missionary congregation of her own, the Franciscan Sisters of Mary Immaculate. Stressing that for each nun of her congregation “the more intense and visible her external activity, the deeper and more fervent her interior life must be,” she obtained permission to begin the practice of perpetual adoration of the Blessed Sacrament in her convents. She also taught her sisters to “see God’s will in everything” and to respect bishops and priests. Mother Caritas died on February 27, 1943.


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