María Fix was born on May 28, 1912 in Elsass, a village near Odessa, now part of the Ukrainian territory but at that time part of the Russian empire. In the midst of a Christian family with her two brothers and four sisters, she grew up helping her parents with farm work and household chores.
There María received the sacraments and grew in her life of piety, demonstrating special devotion to the Most Holy Eucharist. She always remembered with particular feeling the day of her First Holy Communion (May 9, 1921). It will be this devotion to the Eucharist that will mark her whole life.
In 1930, with the advance of the communist revolution and the increase of religious persecution, her family was deported to Russian territory. In 1937 she returned to Elsass to visit her elderly grandmother and there she was detained, indicted, and condemned to forced labor in Siberia. She recalled: “Those nine years were not human life but a hell on earth. Danger of death, fights, blows, robberies, blasphemies, etc. You just had to contemplate and be silent […]. Nevertheless, I always felt the mercy of God, and asked pardon for my sins, since it was also for me that Jesus died on the Cross “.
In 1946, after her release, she was reunited with her family, who had settled in a small Russian village, Buguruslan.
Thanks to her apostolic zeal, she wanted to bring souls to God, to that God to whom she had consecrated her life in the midst of persecutions. Years later, when we met María and had the opportunity to hear from her own lips the story of her vocation, one of our sisters asked her: “María, during those years in prison, didn’t you think of the convent? Didn’t you feel a longing for not having been able to be a nun?” María replied immediately: “No. My convent was the forest”, referring to the forced labor in the concentration camp.
Once in Buguruslan, for almost 60 years she organized and carried on the clandestine Catholic community, gathering Catholics to pray and catechize families.
In 1993 she met the fathers of the IVE (Institute of the Incarnate Word) in Buguruslan, who came to mission these lands. The parish priest at that time was the present bishop of Kazan, Mons. Clemens Pickel. In 1996 the first sisters of the Servants of the Lord arrived in the city. María was able to fulfill her religious vocation, consecrating her life totally to God before the Church on November 1, 1998. Having faithfully fulfilled her mission to be “salt of the earth and light to the world”, on September 26, 2005, surrounded by her family, she gently passed away and thus entered the Father’s House.