COMBONI THAT DAY

In Pace Christi

Fr. Sandron Edoardo

Born: 25/05/1920
Luogo di Nascita: Fiume Veneto (I)

Voti temporanei: 09/09/1953
Voti perpetui: 09/09/1955
Ordinazione: 26/05/1956

Date of Death: 21/08/2017
Place of Death: Castel d’Azzano (I)

Edoardo Sandron was born in Fiume Veneto (Udine) on 25 May, 1920. He entered the novitiate in Gozzano where he took first vows on 9 September, 1953, followed by the scholasticate and perpetual profession in Venegono in 1955 and was ordained priest in Milan in 1956.

He was immediately sent to the mission, first in Ecuador, where he worked until 1967, and then in Peru, up to 1969.

“During the last century – Fr. Natale Basso writes – the Combonis who were immediately sent to the mission after ordination were considered fortunate. Fr. Sandron was one of these. He was appointed to the mission most recently entrusted to the Institute by the Holy See, the Apostolic Prefecture of Esmeraldas, in Ecuador. This new beginning proved very difficult in many ways. The people had to be won over little by little and visits were made on foot, by boat or on horseback. Furthermore, since there was extreme poverty, the work of catechesis had to be accompanied by social assistance. Eleven years later, Fr. Sandron was involved in another beginning when the Comboni Province of Ecuador started to collaborate with that of Peru (then in the care of the German branch), providing personnel for two communities – for what was then called ‘the experience’ – in view of the reunification of the two Comboni branches.

If we were asked to describe Fr. Sandron in a nutshell, we would say he was a man of few words, of essential and unshakeable faith and intense apostolic work. We should also add that he was a tireless catechist and trainer of community leaders”.

Having returned to Italy for a period of four years spent in ministry, in July, 1973, he was sent to the Congo (then known as Zaire) where he worked for about thirty years as assistant pastor, bursar and in ministry, in the parishes of Bamokandi, Tadu, Rungu, Isiro and Mungbere.

Fr. Fermo Bernasconi recalls: “I lived together with him for almost five years while we were responsible for the pastoral work in the parish of Saint Anne in Isiro. Later, I often met him during my visits to the community of Mungbere where he spent many years, about fifteen in all, never once leaving the parish, either for assemblies, retreats or holidays. He took his pastoral work very seriously: celebrations, the youth or confessions. His sense of duty helped him in this, even if it often led him to stress more the negatives aspects but, in the confessional – every day he dedicated hours to this ministry – he seemed another person, more a witness to grace, capable of being demanding but also of consoling. I was always glad to see how many confreres, during their visits to Isiro, went to him for confession. Another commitment he loved very much was that of the youth, especially the altar servers. I also remember him as one who was very faithful to both community and personal prayer, to the Breviary and to the liturgy”.

Fr. Sandron returned to Italy in 2004, when he was 84, and continued to work in ministry in Cordenons up to the beginning of February, 2017, when he was transferred to Castel d’Azzano where he passed away on 21 August of the same year.