Real-life ‘Sister Stella L’ dies at 78

Published November 26, 2021, 11:12 PM

by Analou de Vera

SISTER MARY BATTUNG ( Religious of the Good Shepherd Facebook page)

The nun who was the inspiration behind the 1984 movie “Sister Stella L.” died at the age of 78, her congregation said.

In a Facebook post, the Religious of the Good Shepherd said that Sister Mary Rosario “Chayong” B. Battung “peacefully” died on Thursday, Nov. 25 at Maria Droste Wellness Center in Quezon City.

Her congregation said that during Battung’s 53 years of religious life, she had “always preferred to be among the urban and rural poor, the neglected, and with those who have been deprived of their basic human rights.”

“While Sr. Chayong worked with labor unions in Cavite, she also reached out to the urban poor in Tondo. In popular culture, the 1984 film ‘Sr. Stella L.’ was based on her life but she herself would say the film is about activist nuns in general. She was also active in fostering the understanding and development of feminism in the Philippines,” her congregation said.

“She is survived by her biological sister, Sr. Angela B. Battung, RGS. Thank you for the zealous offering of yourself, Sr. Chayong. Pray for us and continue to intercede for more women to offer themselves generously to the mission,” it added.

A private wake will be held at the Good Shepherd Convent in Quezon City. Also, the Mass of the Resurrection will be on Nov. 28 at 10 a.m. The inurnment will follow at the Good Shepherd Columbary, the congregation announced.

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