A true mother cherished

24 Sep 2008

By The Record

After 44 years of caring for Redemptorists, Dora Tyburg retires.                                


Sweet: Four generations of the family of Dora Tyburg, far right, enjoy a moment. photo: Robert Hiini






















By Robert Hiini
After 44 years of caring for Brothers and priests, Dora Tyburg, the woman known as the “Mother” of the North Perth Redemptorists, is retiring for a well-earned rest at the sprightly age of 91.
Mrs Tyburg has spent four decades donating her time, Monday to Friday, 9am–12pm, lovingly ironing, making habits and mending clothes. Evident of their affection, the Brothers and priests of the monastery said that her impact goes far beyond the practical.
“Every day she is always in wonderful spirits, always happy, always positive about people, never speaking negatively about a single person,” Fr Hugh Thomas CSsR said.
“It’s very sad for us to lose her because she’s like part of the architecture here. The place will not be the same without her.”
The Redemptorists held a thank you lunch at the monastery in her honour on September 16 with her twin daughters, granddaughter and great granddaughter present (pictured) to celebrate her years of dedication. Mrs Tyburg arrived in Fremantle in 1953 having migrated from the Netherlands with her son and twin daughters, her first husband having died at the hands of the Nazi’s during World War II. Symbolic of her jovial personality, she laughed as she related a war-time story of how she stole a cow for her family’s survival, hiding it in a shed and sharing it with their neighbours.
Fr Thomas says that Mrs Tyburg has such an affinity with the Redemptorists because her son Kees was a Redemptorist priest. Sadly, Kees passed away at the age of 44. Four of the Redemptorists are the same age he would have been now and are very thankful for the maternal care she has shown them over the years.
Mrs Tyburg is also the memory of the North Perth Monastery. She has been at the monastery at least 18 years longer than any resident priest or Brother. “I love it here. This is really my second home,” Mrs Tyburg said.
There are doubtless many Redemptorists, here and in heaven, who give thanks to God that Dora chose to make their home her own.