Sister Maria de Lourdes Machado
“It seems that we are in a period of transition preparing to serve a new humanity and the decisions of today are already the beginnings of tomorrow. It is a creative time in history and it is in many dyings that we shall bring forth new life.” (Sister Maria de Lourdes Machado, 1979)
Maria de Lourdes Machado was born March 21, 1924, in Rio Casca, Minas Gerais, Brazil. Before she entered the Religious of the Sacred Heart of Mary in Rio de Janeiro in 1947, she was an elementary school teacher in Uba and Rio de Janeiro. As a religious she taught for many years in Rio and also served as headmistress of the school there. She served twice as Provincial Superior of the Brazilian Province and as General Councillor to Sister Marguerite Marie Goncalves.
Sister Maria de Lourdes was elected ninth General Superior on August 16, 1975. She was responsible for implementing the directives of the 1975 General Chapter document, “Mission: A Call to Justice.” As part of this implementation each province was asked to send sisters to parts of the world where people are poorest and religious are fewest.
Continuing the work already begun on the renewal of religious life under Sister Marguerite Marie, Sister Maria de Lourdes invited all the sisters of the Institute to participate in a process that led to the writing of new Constitutions which were approved at the 1980 General Chapter.
Sister Maria de Lourdes was invited by the Holy See to attend the meeting of the Latin American bishops in Puebla, Mexico, in 1978.
Sister Maria de Lourdes’ term as General Superior ended August 3, 1980.