The Vine of God planted by Marie Virginie in the foundation of lively faith, unpretentious and determined will could not but spread its branches beyond the frontiers of France. Soon the Franciscan Servants of Mary felt themselves called to leave for India.
It was at the invitation of Bishop Henri Prunier, then the Bishop of Salem, that then the Superior General Mother Marie Suzanne with her deep faith and dauntless courage accepted to send six sisters to work in the Diocese of Salem, at Krishnagiri, a little village in then Salem district. The six valiant missionaries: Mother St. Cesaire, (who on disembarking said that she would never return to France and kept to her word) Mother Marie Eugenie, Sr. Antoine Marie, Sr. Isabelle, Sr. Marie Francois and Sr. St. Paul set foot on Indian soil on November 28, 1934.
The little seed planted on the soil of France sprouted slowly. There were calls from India: hence the number of houses grew in the measure that indigenous vocations knocked at our doors. The Novitiate was opened in 1947 at Mangalore. Today, India has two provinces – the sisters of Bangalore Province render their service in 31 houses located in 5 states in 13 dioceses while the sisters of Varanasi Province work in 14 houses, disposed in 5 states in 8 dioceses. The Indian mission has also extended its services to France, Madagascar, Chad and England.
At present, the sisters work in schools, hospitals, dispensaries, hostel for working girls, destitute homes, parish ministry, tailoring centers, family visits and domestic workers, self-help groups, etc.
For the Franciscan Servants of Mary : sisters with brown, white and red faces,
to proclaim Jesus Christ,
to live the Gospel quite simply,
to remain close to the little ones as it has been handed on to us by our first sisters at the beginning of the foundation:
“They are merely the sisters of the servants and of all the poor and unfortunate”.