Procuring Religious for Maribor
Shortly after the death of Bishop Slomsek, the Countess Brandys with her collaborators began to consider how to fulfill the desire of the deceased Bishop Slomsek: to have the school, currently in the care of the Association, placed under the care of religious. The intent was to have religious assume the activity which the Association had begun and which was becoming a burden for some of the women. With this, Maribor would have the Institution that Pope Pius IX had suggested to Bishop Slomsek. The work of the Association would come into the hands of the sisters who would guarantee its existence and its growth.
The president of the Association, Countess Brandys, presented the proposal to both Canon Kosar, the representative of the Association at the Bishop's Curia, and to Dr. Maksimilian Stepisnik, the successor of Bishop Slomsek. She also suggested that help be sought from the religious of Algersdorf-Eggenburg, near Graz. She personally knew of their educational work. Her proposals were accepted and it was suggested that she, as president of the Association, take the first steps in setting up the contacts and dialogues. She accepted this request. At a later time the Countess informed Canon Kosar and Bishop Stepisnik of her work and they continued with the negotiations already undertaken.
Canon Kosar assumed the administrative work with the government of the religious of Algersdorf and with the civil authorities of that time. On the other hand, Bishop Stepisnik of Maribor handled affairs with Bishop Ottakar Attems of Graz, since he had jurisdiction over these religious. As a result of these efforts, Bishop Stepisnik received word on August 15, 1864, that the School Sisters of Graz would send some sisters to Maribor.11
At first only three sisters12 arrived, and later a fourth. They dedicated themselves to the children who had been under the care of the Association of Catholic Women. With this, Bishop Slomsek’s desire for an educational institute under the care of religious was confirmed.13
11. Translator’s note: the actual arrival wasn’t until October 15, 1864.
12. Sr. Margareta Puhar, Superior, Sr. Veronika Bauer, and Sr. Salesia Weitzer. Sister Saveria Langus was sent shortly afterward.
13. This account is in agreement with that of Mother Angelina Krizanic.