Id-Dar tal-Providenza warmly remembers Sr Annunziata Cortis, from the Sisters of Charity of St Jeanne Antide Thouret who has joined the Lord at the venerable age of 105. Sr Annunuziata served at Id-Dar tal-Providenza between 1970 and 1971 and again in 1982. During that time she was also the Superior of the community of nuns residents at Id-Dar tal-Providenza.
Sr Anunziata was born in Rabat, Malta in 1913. She was christened as ‘Pawla’. During those times Europe was passing through difficult times because the first world war (1914-1918) was looming on the horizon. Apart from that, Malta was a British colony and it couldn’t be spared the effects of war.
Sr Annunziata’s parents managed to give their daughter a profound christian and human formation. At a tender age she felt the call for a religious life and after moments of prayer and advice from those who knew her well and could give her guidance, she left everything that was dear to her behind her and at the age of sixteen entered the novitiate of the Sisters of Charity in Tarxien.
Sr Annunziata was a humble person, always ready to learn. After her novitiate she was sent to the Central Hospital in Floriana and at that stage her superiors realised right away that she had the necessary qualities to become a Sister of Charity. One needs to keep in mind that during those days the hospitals did not have the facilities available nowadays and that the personnel were not as qualified as today and so work was more difficult and harder than today.
In 1965, the Sisters of Charity were asked to give their services in a Tripoli hospital and Sr Annunziata went there for two years and there she was quite happy because for her tending the sick was a tangible way to show love and caring with those in need. The two-year period in Tripoli was extended for a lot longer and in 1978 she was resposible for the community of Sisters there. During her long life, she was practically in every care home we have in Malta, ‘Saura’, ‘St Vincent de Paul hospital’, ‘Id-Dar tal-Providenza’, Tarxien ……. Where there was a need she used to go wholeheartedly because in the sick she saw the suffering Christ.
Besides tending the sick, in 1970 she became Provincial Counsellor and during those whole five years she served gladly and with lots of love. Sr Annunziata was a capable woman and very good hearted and, her age notwithstanding, she was always ready to help and give her all wherever she was needed.
She was also a very spiritual woman. Everyone refers to her calmness and prudence, to her keeping to herself what needn’t be said, her being very quick in forgiving those who slighted her, her understanding of others and of accepting their lack of morals and spirituality. She had a jovial character always ready to help and fraternise with others.
Sr Annunziata’s life was interlaced with acts of love as witnessed by all the Sisters that lived with her. Sr Annunziata had this force within her because first of all she was a woman of prayer and intimity with the Lord. She wouldn’t exchange her prayer time with any other activity if not necessarily required.
During the last few years, she lived at the Balzan home of the Sisters of Charity were they spend their time of merited rest after decades of service to charity.