Foundress of The Apostolic Carmel

Mother Veronica

"Obedience is my life"

The Founder

Venerable Mother Veronica

She was a Roman Catholic nun who founded the Sisters of the Apostolic Carmel, a religious congregation of the Discalced Carmelite Third Order for women based in India. She was born as Sophie Leeves in 1823 in Istanbul, capital of the Ottoman Empire, to Henry Daniel Leeves, an Anglican chaplain to the British Embassy there, and to Sophia Mary Haultain, the daughter of a Colonel in the British army.
In 1863 Veronica was assigned to teach at the congregation's foundation in India, sent at the request of the bishop Marie Antony, who had appealed to France for assistance to hand over the education of youth to religion. As a preliminary step he had bought a house at Calicut (now Kozhikode) in 1860 and fitted it up for a convent and at the request of the people opened a school there on 1 April 1862, calling it St. Joseph's School. Veronica and Mary Joseph, after a long and tiring voyage and a brief halt at Mangalore, arrived there on 27 April 1862, and took charge of the school. She served as the first Superior of the convent and spent two years teaching at both Mangalore and Kozhikode.

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