ISSN: 1391 - 0531
Sunday, April 22, 2007
Vol. 41 - No 47

Amma, guide us from heaven and help us

Freda Fernando

By Sunil Fernando

It has been three years since she left us, and “went home” to the Lord. However, memories of the exemplary life she led in this world still remain vivid in my mind and in the minds of my two sisters.

Amma was an exceptionally good person, the type one cannot easily find, especially in today’s world. Though of quiet disposition, Amma radiated much love and affection to her family, relations and many friends. She possessed so much courage that my Thaththa on his death bed had told her, “I am not afraid to die, because I know you have courage”. Rarely did we see Amma losing her temper or in a “bad mood”.

As small children, my two younger sisters, Savithri, Nilmani, and I had an immense amount of love from Amma in every aspect of our lives. Amma saw us through our education, giving the best possible assistance and guidance always.

Even after the untimely demise of our Thaththa at the relatively young age of 45, Amma always did her best to keep us happy and content.

Circumstances compelling her to take up a teaching position in the Montessori of the Good Shepherd Convent in Kandy, Amma looked after all our needs. Apart from ensuring that we did our studies in a proper manner, she even encouraged us in furthering our talents, interests in life.

In particular, Amma encouraged me in my intense interest in music. She bought me a set of drums so that I could join a band in Kandy. Amma also encouraged both my sisters to follow the AMI Montessori Course which eventually enabled them to go to the USA for lucrative employment. The sacrifices she would have made to make all this possible for the three of us would have been immense.

Amma was a popular teacher in the Montessori class at Good Shepherd Convent, Kandy. She made many friends at the Sacred Heart Church at Katugastota as well as in the Curisillo Movement in which she was an active member. She was a loving and caring aunt to all her nephews and nieces, a great mother-in-law and a much loved and adored grand-mother. Amma was also a very loving sister to her late brother Selvin and sister Merlin and to her only surviving sister Lilian, at whose home she stayed whenever she came to Colombo from Kandy.

Amma was generous and always looked into ways and means of helping anyone in whatever manner possible, and this made her a happy human being, knowing that she had indeed made someone else’s life a little brighter and their life’s burdens lighter.

During our visits to Kandy after we were married, Amma always sent us back to Colombo, loaded with many gifts. Opening her cupboard, she always found something to be given to us and to others as well, which included the poor.

To all those who sought Amma’s guidance and advice in life, she was always available. I am aware that Amma’s advice has healed many a broken heart and eased many a troubled mind.

Amma was a devout Roman Catholic, giving priority always to God and to the church. Even on the eve of her sudden death, she had heard mass at the Sacred Heart Church in Katugastota.

I am confident that Amma is now with our Lord, her Maker, happy and content that she has found everlasting peace and rest in His presence.

We still miss and love you very much, Amma! Our only prayer is, “Please guide us from heaven and help us to always live the kind of life you lived on earth, because that will be the best tribute we, your three children could ever give you.”

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Copyright 2007 Wijeya Newspapers Ltd.Colombo. Sri Lanka.