Sr. CHIN, Sui-Chi Rose (Rose Miriam) MM
Long life of dedication ends for Maryknoll Sister
Sister Rose Chin
Maryknoll Sister Rose (Sui Chi) Chin died peacefully in the Residential Care Unit of the Maryknoll Sisters Centre in Ossining, New York, on 26 July 2007. She was 83-years-old and had been a member of the congregation for 45 years.
Chin Sui-chi was born in Kweilin, Guangxi province, China, on 15 January 1924 to Chin Sung-hsuen (father) and Fu Wong-tsun (mother). She had three brothers. Her parents sent her to Kweilin (Guilin) to completer her primary education, where she received her certificate in 1938. Education for girls was unusual beyond a few years of primary school at that time in China.
Sister Rose said of her encounter with the Catholic Church in Guilin, “One Sunday, a friend took me to church for Mass. I heard (the priest’s) sermon. I saw some sisters and I said to my friend that I wanted to be a sister too. So I began taking instruction.”
She was later baptised, receiving the name, Theresa, and joined the Sister Catechists of Our Lady, a community being trained for the Kweilin Church by the Maryknoll Sisters. She and two other sisters were in Macau studying at St. Rose of Lima Secondary School, with the help of Maryknoll Sisters, when the Bamboo Curtain closed China to the outside world.
She graduated from St. Rose’s in 1956 and went on to study at Grantham Teachers Training College in Hong Kong, receiving her certificate in 1959. In Kweilin, her community was disbanded during the Cultural Revolution. However, as she wished to continue in religious life, she joined the Maryknoll Sisters at their novitiate in Quezon City, The Philippines, on 2 May 1962.
On reception into Maryknoll, she received the religious name of Rose Miriam, which she shortened to Rose, but retained for the rest of her life.
Sister Rose made her first profession in Quezon City on 19 March 1964 and final profession on 24 June 1969 in Hong Kong. She received an Associate of Arts degree in Education from Rogers College, Maryknoll, New York in 1973.
She was assigned to work in Hong Kong in 1964 where she was active in teaching and the administration of a school in Kwun Tong, an industrial area of Hong Kong, for 25 years. In describing her describing her work she recalled that “most of the pupils were from resettlement areas and some of our pupils came from broken families. Many of them had learning difficulties and emotional problems also. We had four special classes for these children, hoping to help them learn and develop according to their individual abilities.”
After being separated from her family for more than 25 years, Sister Rose received a letter from her younger brother in China in 1978. It contained the news that her eldest brother had died in 1958, her mother in 1959, her father in 1960 and her second brother in 1968.
Her remaining family members in China were her youngest brother, two sisters-in-law and 11 nieces and nephews. Later, she was able to visit her family in China and later still her niece, Chin Hiu Yuk, came to live in Hong Kong.
Sister Rose gave service at Maryknoll Sisters Centre from 1990 to 1995 in the Health Care Unit, her own need for health care requiring her becoming a member of the Maryknoll Residential Care in 2003.
Sister Rose in survived by her niece, Chin Hui Yuk, of Shatin, in Hong Kong and her husband, Lee Ling Cheung, and their children, as well as her family in Ling Chuan, Kweilin, Guangxi province, China, represented by Chin Tian Xi.
Funeral services were held at the Maryknoll Sisters Centre
with Vespers on Monday, 30 July and a Mass of Christian Burial on Tuesday, 31
July. Burial was at the Maryknoll sisters Cemetery.
4 November 2007
◆ The Maryknoll Sisters in Hong Kong, 1921-1969: In Love with the Chinese, By Cindy Yik-Yi Chu, Palgrave Macmillan, 2004.
◆ 關愛華人——瑪利諾修女與香港 (1921-1969), 朱益宜著, 中華書局香港有限公司, 2007.
◆ 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.
◆ 先賢錄－－香港天主教神職及男女修會會士 (1841-2016), 天主教香港教區檔案處, 2016.