January 16 – IN ANDHRA PRADESH
IN ANDHRA PRADESH
The State of Andhra Pradesh (275 000 sq. km. and a population of some 70 millions) came into existence after India had gained its independence (1947); it did not exist when the Brothers first arrived there on 16 January 1926. They settled at Vijayawada, which is now part of Andhra Pradesh and was called Betswada. Bishop Vismara of Hyderabad had requested them to look after the orphans in Gundala; they built a technical school for them but had to hand it over to the priests of the mission in The previous year, Bishop Vismara had called on the Brothers to take over All Saints’ College (Hyderabad) from a group of priests. In 1936 he had made a similar request concerning St Patrick’s in Secundarabad, Hyderabad’s twin city.
It was not until 1953 that the number of schools run by the Brothers in the State began to increase at an amazing rate. Between 1953 and 1955 four very large ones were started in Hyderabad itself (See 8 . November). In 1955 the creation of St Gabriel’s at Kazipet was, as it were, the birth certificate of what was to become the Province of Central India in 1975. At the same time as the school, a juniorate was started, using Telugu, the language of Andhra Pradesh, as the everyday language. A scholasticate was also started there three years-later. –
From 1963 to 1983 eight secondary schools were opened in the eastern part of the State: Rudrampur (1963), K.hamman (1964), Nalgonda (1965), Mattampally (1966), Gannavaram (1969), Paloncha (1974), Patamata (1974), and Nuvzid (1983).
The setting up of the Provincial house in Hyderabad in 1979- when the Brothers took charge of a home for elderly people in Suriapet – was followed by three foundations in the capital: Little Flower Jr College (1982), a house for pre-novices (1983) and a juniorate (1985).
Near the border with Orissa the Brothers started working among very poor villagers at Manapuram (1983), then at M.M. Guda (1991). Others began teaching literacy to slum children in Hyderabad (1990)
In 1996 a school was opened at Kurnool (in the south), and another one at Repalle (in the east) in 1999.
In 1999 the number of communities in Andhra Pradesh was 21.