Ex Pastorelle Sister Speaks Out

                   STOLEN IDENTITY - STOLEN COPYRIGHT                      

# The Pastorelle Sisters, seeking acknowledgement for their contributions
to Ethnhic Arts and Crafts in Australia,..did not name the artist  whose work
gave them this kudos, me, Sister Esther
, their first Australian recruit. They were not content to abduct me.,..as a "youngster" not yet an adult,  (since this was  the directive given by their Foundeer, James Alberion:."Youngsters instead of adults, inexperienced.. so easier to 'mould")....they had to do something about getting rid of me when I finally realised what they'd done to me and the ruin they'd caused to my life. So, they decided to write me out of existence in the best and most official-looking way...publish a history of their 50 years in Australia, have it written for them based on their "recollections" rather than on historical, archival facts, excuse themselves if some of the "recollections" were "imprecise"....since "oral histories are by their nature flawed...due to the selective memories of individuals..'' Did they set aside details contained in their historical records because the facts may have been incriminating or embarassing or maybe detrimental to the preferred version of the truth ? Too many not very pleasant details and comments? I believe that this little yellow paperback 'history' had an agenda....rewrite the facts! 
BUILDING COMMUNITY was acclaimed as: "...a completely professional account of recent history, not just The life and times of the Pastorelle Sisters..." ( Foreword by Retrired Bishop J.P. O'Connell...who was sick and elderly, who by his own words they'd  befriended...so he was unsuspecting.) Bishop O'Connell probably never knew I was even among the Pastorelle Sisters when he was Vicar for Religious!

        "WHEN THE COCK CROWS....."  (Gospel - the denial of Peter)

has Sr. Alberta Scalet, who knew me well at their Carlton Hostel  stating" "We seldom had Australian girls staying..  (supposing she meant at the Hostel)..." ...these "just passed through". "St. Ann's in Carlton, (up the road) took in Australian girls" ( Notes 60/p.140)
(Wouldn't they have kept a record of the girls who were recruited, a record of their first ever recruit and Anglo-Australian girl?) Conveniently, for this "history",certain details were not extracted from archival records but rather based on 'recollections of individuals that could be imprecise and selective!'(Author's Notes xiii-xiv)
 Maybe their First Australian girl 1959-60, was just a colective delusion!

I was never there! The Pastorelle Sisters did not have... so could not have abducted from the Hostel at Carlton, an Australian schoolgirl  who was boarding there from mid April 1959 to 25th January 1960!
SECOND DENIAL  - appropriate my artistic work, my identity and deny my very presence at a place called STANTHORPE in Queensland, where I was sent, as one of three original Pastorelle Sisters to work in a Parish assisting Italian migrant farmer families and their children.

The first stop to achieving this denial was to approach The Australian National Archives...(see b&w image at top). Apparently 'a' Pastorelle Sister painted that Mural...(Maybe Sr. Doreen Bentley "..put to use her creative art and craft gifts .." since she is "also a talented painter" ( CH.6/22)...there was no other, I never existed! I feel an insidious sense of demeaning, disrespect and insult that migrants welcomed to this country, would use an Australian Government National Archive to delete the memory of an Australian born citizen! I feel as if they want to disposess me of my country, or again, have my country question my right to belong!
With the  publication of this photo of my artwork, without my permission, without acknowledgement, the Pastorelle Sisters laid the foundation for the THIRD DENIAL - Mother Gemma Nazzari, in this photo, is presented  as having being the Sister to the left...when it was  me....(Mother Gemma was fatter, shorter and at least 25 yrs older.....see her in the photo below at centre of the three Pastorelle Sisters in Brisbane 1972!)  In "Building Community" is written that Sr. Doreen Bentley did a lot of work in Stanthorpe among children of the...six? country schools, (that number was and still is 13), she learnt to drive in Stanthorpe...really?  If the facts be told,..it was I who learnt to drive in Stanthorpe, (Sr. Doreen had learnt to drive when she was in the Army...nothing mentioned about that either...why?)  It was I who taught the kids and painted things and staged concerts at Stanthorpe! I wrote and asked Doreen to tell me when she was in Stanthorpe since nobody remembers her. Rudely, or out of guilt, I received no response.

The proverbial cock has crowed....and THRICE the Pastorelle Sisters have DENIED...the facts in their own archives and files.
They want it believed that they never had an Australian girl at the Hostel, then at the Thornbury Kindy for four years, then in Stanthorpe for three...but photos do not lie. Australia is not A Catholic Nation. Our politics are not controlled by a monarch- pope. Priests and nuns in Australia cannot legally abduct, as they have done in Italy, minor schoolgirls to shut away in convents under the pretext of educating them... to satisfy the dreams and aspirations of a founder with strange philosophies....who wanted them all to regard him as their spiritual father, call him " Primo Maestro" having the significance (in Italian) of  "Papa'".
One sister in particular, wrote to me that he had lured from her family at 12 years of age..a little girl who needed her mother and her father, to know there was a strong man to protect her! This crooked little priest elevated and subplanted himself to this position in front of this innocent, uneducated little girl, had her hang on his every word, dressed her as a nun when she was 14 and sent her out in parishes to misrepresent herself, to infatuate other girls with her "youthfulness", as they called it, and brainwashed her all her life! When I met her she was 32 and blindly, as if in a cult, smitten with...her "Papa" who could do no wrong! The little priest knew what he was doing stocking his convents and institutes with children, "Youngsters" he called them! Makes my skin crawl!

Ingest the girl....take her identity away
In publishing this photo of my artwork to establish their contributions to Ethnic Arts and Crafts in Australia, the Pastorelle Sisters "ingested me" - made me nameless in a crowd of many, made an Australian citizen disappear historically, as a person and as an artist. This is an obscene, cruel, creepy act! They may not want to acknowledge me  because I escaped the life of pain and abuse they had imposed on me- that sapped my spirit and destroyed  my health and prospects for the rest of my life..
....but I am AUSTRALIAN !  They cannot steal that from me!

The Australian National Archives Library has amended the erroneous information given by the Pastorelle Sisters about this photograph, having received proof to the contrary from me.

#  The Pastorelle Sisters cannot claim to have made an "honest mistake" here. The intent was to COVER UP the crime of Abduction they'd comitted in their past against me as a schoolgirl of 16.
Does the past coming back to bite?


 article  continues to be under construction.......
RECRUITING_METHODS___- get the ..."youngsters"

Recently I spoke to a Vicar for Religious about my life. It went smoothly, the ignorance factor was well employed...they did not know, they did not realise, they were not informed, I must have agreed to be a nun...( I was 15, just out of boarding school, a minor in the custody of my mother. I was not in charge, neither was God in the form of nuns  in charge! I could not agree to anything extraordinary affecting my life - legally. Strangely, that did not seem to compute!) The sisters were only doing what nuns do, they are all so sweet and lovely....

THE VENEER STUCK WELL, but the truth lay hidden and the Vicar became progressively, escalatingly but reservedly defensive as I scratched away to expose the underlying reality.. .that none of them want  to see.

Many girls in Italy who found themselves  suddenly among the Pastorelle Sisters facing taking a step they had never considered taking, had been  ill-gotten. Some were lured from  their destitute parents wanting a better life for them, with promises of education and status. Others  were beguiled by the Father Founder with his superior holier than the others demeanour and  aura of other-worldliness, on having been brought to him by their elder sisters already under
 his sway. Others had been impressed and beguiled by the man's status among Cardinals and by his friendship with the Pope. Yet others had been 'fished" by fishers of men- pre Novices dressed in the full garb of professed nuns so to be indestinguishable from these who were in short supply...Pre-Novices who'd
been "in" a few months and were just giggling, spontaneous girls, dressed as nuns, sent into parishes  to lure others. This ploy  worked well..look at the
lovely, happy youthful nuns! The Founder knew what he was doing! Yet others were 'poached' from higher educational institutions by  "Pauline Family' candidates who were also  attending...

Everyone was to be on the look-out for recruits!


Religious people,  for centuries, have been blinding the laity with the aura of 'godliness' that they weave around themselves to establish that priests and religious are holy, pious, innocent, unknowing, act in good faith, do nothing but good, are self-effacing, self-sacrificing,  live according to  God's will, have God's ear, are empowered by God,  must be respected, do nothing ungodly, obey God's wishes and seek the glory of the church and the good of mankind!

Underneath this veneer of indoctrination and learnt holy demeanour however,  they are as accomplished as the next corporate executive at lying, using 'mental restriction" and at employing  manipulative and deceptive measures. These are an integral part of religious culture and training maintain the 'godliness'. They believe  they have a divine right to take and do what they want because God wants what they want! Accused of breaking the law they plead innocence and
ignorance due to their culture and customs bordering on delusion...

All they saw was the accomplishment of God's will and their intentions were pure...they meant no harm...they could never men harm...etc. How long will it take before people see this for what it is?

The Vicar had an appointment as soon as the conversation became.... sensitive. I was  repeatedly asked what years  I was in Stanthorpe. The Vicar brought up the name of Sr. Doreen Bentley and was surprised when I mentioned that  she was a postulant in 1966 on my return from my 7 yrs in Italy.. The Vicar understood that Doreen was the one and only Australian!     Here comes the truth from inside and outside!
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Sr. Cesarina Paolini (right) and Esther (left) at Stanthorpe QLD  in 1972 featuring a mural painted  for the Festival of St. Joseph the Worker by Sr. Esther.

Prior to my intervention with the Australian National Archives Library to have the details posted by the Pastorelle Sisters concerning this photograph amended, the Pastorelle Sisters claimed that the nun at the left was Mother Gemma Nazzari. This was not true.
1973 - STANTHORPE Qld. Sr. Esther with  the class of  First  Communicants from the  13  country state schools of the district. The Pastorelle Sisters' historical account. BUILDING COMMUNITY , published in 2008, categorically states that it was Sister Doreen Bentley- (the only remaining Australian Pastorelle Sister) who did this work. Show us those photos!
1973- STANTHORPE, Qld. Sr. Esther with First Communicants - enlargement of photo above.Stanthorpe QLD. 1973

STANTHORPE Qld.  1969,  Sister Esther (left) with Sr. Adele Dal Bello (now dcd), with Rosemary at one of the farms in the area, whilst introducing ourselves to the Italian farmer and orchardist families of the district,  prior to our official arrival in  January 1970.

 1972 The Stanthorpe Pastorelle Sisters Right to left-Sr. Esther Henderson, bilingual Australian, 26yrs. Mother Gemma Nazzari.approx 55yrs, (who wanted me to call her " Mamma Gemma"), with hard-working, genuine Sr. Adele dal Bello-(now dcd..why do the good die young?)  at the Ekibin Rd. "Sausage Tree Park" on a visit to Brisbane.

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