It was a day of joy and thanksgiving as a remote tribe in the northeast of India celebrated its first religious vocation last week.
Sister Yakang Dulley became the first Catholic nun from the Apatani tribe of Arunachal Pradesh, in northeastern India. There are an estimated 43,800 Apatani people based on the latest census.
Dulley Yakang made her first religious profession as a member of the Congregation of the Mother Carmel with four others in the presence of provincial superior Sister Emilin and Bishop James Thoppil of Kohima.
The ceremony was held at the Mount Carmel Parish in Dimapur, the commercial capital of Nagaland state.
“It is a matter of pride for all of our Apatani community that one of our own became a religious sister,” said Nani Yase Teresa, president of the Apatani Catholic Women Association of Itanagar diocese.
“I used to pray for her daily during my family prayers and I pray that many more youth from Arunachal Pradesh become fathers and sisters like Sister Yakang," added Teresa.
Sister Yakang is the daughter of Dulley Buda and Dulley Adii of Hapoli parish. She is third among nine siblings and started her religious formation after completing her bachelor's degree.
“It is a matter of joy for the young Church in Arunachal Pradesh to get a vocation to religious life," said Bishop John Thomas of Itanagar.
"I hope she will be a source of inspiration for many more young people to come forward to offer their lives in the service of the people,” added the prelate.
Sister Yakang is the tenth religious nun of indigenous origin from Itanagar diocese. - Frank Krishner / RVA News