Mother Brambilla, 55 and a native of Milan, has requested that she be called simply by her name “because he feels like a sister among sisters.”
According to a statement, after the election and the singing of the “Te Deum” in thanksgiving for their 18th general chapter, Mother Brambilla addressed the nuns of the community quoting the founder of their congregation, St. Daniel Comboni.
In his first homily in Khartoum, Sudan, as apostolic pro-vicar, Comboni said: “I will make common cause with each of you … your good will be mine and your grievances will be mine.” The same phrase was quoted by the superior general at her first election.
On her confirmation, “Mother Adele identifies herself with the words that follow in the same homily, which she makes her own: I do not ignore the serious weight I am taking on, but I accept it with the certainty that you will help me to carry it with hope,” the statement continued.
Mother Adele Brambilla made her religious profession on Feb. 11, 1973, in Erba, Italian province of Como. Until 1980 she studied in England, where she received her diploma in nursing.
For four years she looked after the sick sisters in Verona, and then left in May, 1984 for Amman, Jordan, where she worked in the Italian hospital as matron. She remained there until 1996, when she became provincial superior.
On Oct. 5, 1998, she was elected 11th superior general of the Comboni Missionary Sisters.
On Dec. 22 of the same year she received from His Highness Hassan, the prince regent, on behalf of King Hussein of Jordan, the country’s Independence Medal of First Order for her 15 years of service in favor of the poor at the Hospital of Amman.
Bishop Daniel Comboni, canonized by John Paul II less than a year ago, founded the Comboni Missionary Sisters and made it possible in 1872 for women religious to participate directly in the missions in Central Africa.
“In Africa a nun is the equivalent of three priests in Europe,” the famous missionary said, who summarized in the words “holiness and capacity” the requirements to be a missionary and cautioned that “in Africa you must be prepared for many sacrifices and, if necessary, also martyrdom.”
At present there are about 1,700 Comboni women missionaries from 33 countries.
For additional information see the Comboni Web page.