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News of our work in India & Bangladesh November 2005 - April 2006

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In the late 1930s Margaret Mary Rabson, born in 1915, a schoolmaster’s daughter, went up to Oxford University, joining the Society of Women Home Students (now St. Anne’s College). There she became one of an inseparable trio of friends. On their graduation Margaret taught at St. Dunstan’s Abbey in Plymouth, then in Exeter before moving to Greater London. One of her friends tested her vocation with the Oxford Mission Sisterhood of the Epiphany, and was professed as Sister Jane SE. So began Margaret’s long association with the Oxford Mission.

After moving to London, Margaret was for many years head of the French department of a big Grammar School in Beckenham. She laughingly described herself as a female Mr. Chips! When on furlough Sister Jane always spent time with Margaret, and updated her on all the work of the Sisterhood.

Several years later, when Mother Susila of the Christa Sevika Sangha with three of her Sisters came to England and wanted a ‘headquarters’, Margaret gladly offered them the hospitality of her spacious house and showed them round London. She started teaching the Bangladeshi Sisters English, and continued this for years with the use of cassette tapes. She gave a generous donation which enabled the rebuilding of the Primary School boarding house for the girls in Jobarpar, and she was thrilled to visit there with a younger friend to see the CSS compound, the boarding house, the children and their life - her only stay in Bangladesh.

After retirement she ended her life at St. Katharine’s House, a residential home run by the Community of St. Mary the Virgin in Wantage. But to the end her great friendship with Mother Susila and the CSS Sisters continued, and she had phoned Mother Susila in Barisal, as she frequently did, shortly before her sudden death on 13th March, 2005.

The Bangladeshi Sisters just can’t believe that Margaret Mary has died - they were so fond of her.


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