Fr Hermann Duncan O.Carm, Balluta writes: 

As a friend of the Ruggier family, I feel it is my duty to write about a religious member of the family who worked tirelessly among the Congregation of the Ursuline Sisters. Mother Tarcisia Ruggier passed to eternal life on February 13, 2019 at the venerable age of 94. She spent 78 years of them serving within the Religious Ursuline family. She constantly strove to perform her duties thoroughly, until she was old and ill, as a religious consecrated to God. 

As the Mother Superior of the convent of Żabbar where she was born, she saw to the demolishment and building of the new convent which was adorned with a beautiful new chapel within the building.

In 1968, she was chosen to be the Superior General of the Ursuline Congregation where she served in this office until 1980. Here she did all she could, so that the renewal called for by the Vatican Council II would be implemented in the best way possible. 

Among the many projects she saw through as Superior General, was the project of the enlargement of the General House in Sliema. Throughout this project she showed a great trust in the Providence of God to acquire the necessary funds to realise the project. This led to bringing about an improved way of life for the sisters and the children and infants they cared for.

During her term of office, she sent many sisters to train professionally in the field of education and childcare. Moreover, a large number of youths joined the congregation, including my mother’s  cousin Sr Elizbeth Azzopardi. Mother Tarcisia did this for the good of the congregation and her own personal holiness. 

Thanks to her efforts she extended the work of the congregation outside our shores to care for Maltese and foreign children and teens in need, in whom the sisters saw the image of Christ. 

Under her leadership a number of new houses were established: Lija House (1971);  the Institute Giavanti Noto, Sicily (1971); Casa del Fanciullo in Catania, Sicily (1975); a hostel in London, UK (1979); and a house in Ghajnsielem (1979).

Her funeral was concelebrated three days later in the church of Our Lady of Loreto in Guardamangia. Mgr Joe Bajada delivered the sermon, on love and respect, and emphasised these values which Mother Tarcisia held so dear. He mentioned her great love towards Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament and her strong Marian devotion.

Besides her family, some of whom travelled from Canada and Ireland, a large number of sisters attended the funeral.

We hope and pray that the most merciful Lord and Saint Angela who she so loved throughout her life, will take her into their eternal embrace, reserved for the righteous. Lord grant her eternal rest.


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