Sr. ANDRIEUX, Therese de St Joseph SPC
年 3 月 20 日在法國巴黎出生
Death of Mother Therese
Sister Therese de Joseph Andrieux, better known as “Mother Therese” died at St. Paul’s Hospital on 13 May 1980, aged 89.
She was born in Paris on 20 March 1891, entered the Novitiate of the Sisters of St. Paul de Chartres on 15 October 1915 and was admitted to her first Profession on 25 August 1918.
Sister Therese completed her training as a nurse at the Pasteur Hospital at Cherbourg, and embarked on the S.S. Andre Lebon M.M. in Marseilles and arrived in Hong Kong on November 1920, after month-long, very rough voyage.
On arrival, she was assigned to the ward on the 2nd floor of the old St. Paul’s Hospital, nursing mostly the Chinese patients. She succeeded in learning word by word, without a proper teacher, how to speak Cantonese, and became very popular through her great love of the Chinese people whose genius, courage and endurance to hardship she was never tired of admiring.
Sister Therese was then young, tall and well built and walked with a natural dignity unshaken by events. The Sister recall with pleasure how some Irish Fathers under her care in the ward, nicknamed her “the Cruiser” from the way in which she bounced through the swing doors. She remained at St. Paul’s Hospital until 1954 and events showed that the nickname was most appropriate.
In 1941, during the Japanese occupation, Sister Therese witnessed thundering shells knocking large ugly holes in the thick walls of the hospital. She followed her patients, who were evacuated into the Convent Chapel.
In 1945, the Americans missed their target on the hills and rained 14 direct bombs on the Convent School and Orphanage, killing instantly 54 orphans and seven sisters.
At last, Bishop Valtorta and his Councilors declared the area a dangerous zone and recommended the immediate evacuation from all the remaining buildings. Twenty-eight Sisters and eighty-four orphans were given shelter at the Caonssian Convent, Caine Road. While the remaining Sisters tearfully packed, the patients were transferred to other centres or sent home. It thus happened that Sister Therese became a Captain of “the Cruiser”. She summoned the Sisters to face the challenge by remaining with her.
“The Americans,” she said, “are our friends - they will know they had made a mistake and will keep at large. I feel this place is safe for patients and for ourselves.”
With this, some Sisters enthusiastically remained until the return of the Allies, six months later.
After the war, Sister Therese became Matron of St. Paul’s and in 1954, she was appointed Provincial Superior until 1960 when she gladly accepted a lighter job as Superior of the boarding house in Macao where she put all her love and concern for the young girls under training for their future life. To the end, “encouraging the poor and the young to improve their living conditions had been her constant focus.”
In 1967, Mother Therese whose health was failing, returned to
the Convent at Causeway Bay and normally would have sailed for France for a
completer rest, but the Chinese Sisters she had so loved and served, in turn,
showed their concern and made an appeal to keep their beloved mother. This was
granted. So after thirteen years of illness with physical pains religiously
offered as a completion of her missionary work, Mother Therese died peacefully
still a missionary, in Hong Kong.
23 May 1980
◆ 先賢錄－－香港天主教神職及男女修會會士 (1841-2010), 天主教香港教區檔案處, 2010.