My Dear Confreres,
are already in the season of Advent and at the end of it, we will be celebrating the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Advent lays emphasis on the three dimensions of our Lord’s coming – his first coming, his coming in glory at the end of the world and his coming among us daily. It is a season of ‘waiting’ ‘longing’ and ‘expectation’ for the Lord to come. While waiting for the Lord’s second coming in glory, we remember and celebrate his first coming. In this process, our Lord’s coming takes place in our hearts, homes and communities on the daily basis.
Advent being a time of preparing for the Lord, it culminates in Christmas, which brings joy, happiness, serenity, peace, justice and unity. As such, our preparation should not be confined to external activities, but should be more internal.
Let us open our hearts. Let us receive our Lord Jesus into our hearts. Through this season of Advent and the celebration of Christmas, we must allow our Lord to guide our lives and all that we do. Unless we allow our Lord to be born in our hearts and unless we allow our Lord to shape our lives, mere external celebrations and practices are in vain. Let our celebration of Christmas bring joy, happiness and peace to all – the people around us, the people with whom we live and the people for whom, we are ministering.
In a special way for this year, the best way to celebrate Christmas could be with the affected people of Gaja cyclone. Let this advent and Christmas be an occasion for us to do all that is possible to alleviate the suffering of the affected people. Let us make special efforts in this regard.
The 20th General Chapter 2019
As scheduled, the 20th General Chapter 2019 is to be held from the 1st of February, 2019 to the 13th of February, 2019 at Msfs Provincial house, Guwahati, Assam, India. All the preparations are underway. As part of the preparation, Rev. Fr. Abraham Vettuvelil, our Superior General by his Circular dated 08.09.2018 in SG-AB 18-96 has appointed the Pre- Capitular Commission (PCC). This Commission is already involved in matters relating to preparation and organization of the General Chapter, 2019.
Let us continue to pray for the success of the 20th General Chapter 2019.
Taking up Pioneering Mission in Malawi – Journey to Karonga Diocese
Greetings from Malawi team! We are fine and doing well in Malawi. We would like to present to you these few lines regarding our first journey to Karonga diocese in Malawi.
After the arrival of Fr. Ignacimuthu, the Provincial and Fr. Nicholas, the bursar on 13th of October, 2018 in the provincial house, Morogoro, immediate preparations to go to Malawi was undertaken. On 15th of October, 2018, we (Frs. Soosai Raj, Anantharaj and Nelson Arockiasamy) had a meeting with our provincial and bursar and thereafter there was a common meeting in which, Fr. Mathew Thazhathukunnel enlightened us on certain things.
As scheduled, on 16th October, 2018, we six of us (both the provincials, the bursar and we the pioneering team) began our journey from MSFS provincial house Morogoro to Karonga diocese after the celebration of the Holy Eucharistic at 5.30 am by Fr. Mathew, the Provincial of EastAfrica province. In the evening around 7.30 pm, we reached OCD Novitiate at Mbeya, for the night stay. On 17th morning, we began our journey after the mass celebrated by Fr. Ignacimuthu.
At 10.15 am, we reached the border and we had to spend sometime in the border for the formalities to be completed. At 1.30 pm (Malawi time), we reached St. Mary’s parish in the diocese of Karonga. The Bishop Rt. Rev. Martin Mtumbuka, all the priests of Karonga diocese,
people from St. Mary’s parish and people from Livingstonia parish which will be entrusted to MSFS, came to welcome us. After our lunch, Provincials and the bursar had a meeting with the Bishop.
On 18th October, 2018, we visited Livingstonia. The people welcomed us warmly and we had a meeting with the elders and the people. We also visited the land, where the Parish church is to be constructed and also we planted some pine trees. In the evening, the Bishop of Karonga arranged dinner in the new bishop’s house to honor and welcome us into his diocese. All the priests, religious and others, working in the diocese participated.
From 19th to 22nd of October, 2018, we all of us went to the neighboring dioceses of Mzuzu and Lilongwe to meet some of the religious congregations, like Capuchins, Missionaries of Africa, Carmelites, and DMI. We also had a meeting with the Bishop of Mzuzu. On 22nd of October, 2018, we had another meeting with the bishop of Karonga in the Cathedral parish and discussed about our stay, learning the language and individual experiences and other matters concerning taking up the Livingstonia mission in the month of March, 2019. After lunch, our Frs. Mathew, Ignacimuthu and Nicholas wished us and bid us goodbye and started their journey back to Morogoro. Right now, we are staying in the Diocese of Karonga and are learning the language. We are looking forward to the month of March, 2019 to take up Livingstonia mission.
Fr. D. Nelson
The Gaja Cyclone and the Disaster
As you know, in the early hours of 16th of November, 2018, the cyclone ‘Gaja’ hit seven districts of Tamilnadu. Many of us personally witnessed the cyclone and its fury. It wreaked havoc in several districts, including Nagapatnam, Thiruvarur, Thanjavur and Pudukkottai. It also affected some parts of Trichy and Dindigul
Devastation and Destruction
All the tiled houses, sheet houses and huts have been totally destroyed. A major catastrophe is the destruction caused to the livelihood of the people. All most all the trees have been uprooted. All the cultivations have been destroyed. In the coastal areas, fishing boats and nets have been damaged. The province itself suffered heavy damages in some of our institutions and parishes. As the catastrophe unfolded, the people had no access to food, transport, electricity, water, communication etc.
Relief & Rehabilitation works
The province is doing some level of relief works in the affected areas. A team consisting of Fr. Amirtharajan (Councilor), Fr. Selvaraj (coordinator), Fr. Santhiyagu, Fr. Joseph Xavier, Fr. Abin and Fr. Yesuraj have been formed in this regard. Our fathers are doing the relief works in many villages. We are providing the people with purified drinking water, bed sheets, tarpaulins, saris, candles, mosquito-coils and also all the necessary household things. Since all the electric polls and electric lines have been so badly dismantled and destroyed, there is no possibility of getting electricity at least for few months, especially in villages. As such, we have started to help the people in the villages, with solar electric lambs with the dual aspect of recharging the phones and lighting the house.
We also intend to take up rehabilitation works. The social work team together with the provincial administration had a meeting on 29.11.2018 to work out the details on the rehabilitation of the people of our parishes, mission stations and also the badly affected parts of the cyclone hit region. The team is also making a study of the affected areas so as to identify the rehabilitation requirements.
We gratefully place on record the consolation, concern, contribution and the prayers received from Fr. Abraham Vettuvelil, our Superior General, the General Administration and the Provincials and their Administrations and confreres, including the MDOs. We are strengthened and encouraged by their prayers and contribution to the Relief & Rehabilitation Fund. On behalf of the province, we whole heartedly thank them for their love and support. We assure you that all the details of the contribution to the Relief & Rehabilitation Fund will be maintained. The fund will be utilized only for the affected people and proper account will be submitted.
Provincial and Fr. A. Selvaraj
Gaja Cyclone – Relief & Rehabilitation Fund
1. When money is sent FROM ABROAD :
Name: TAMILNADU AND PONDICHERRY FRANSALIAN SOCIETY
A/C No: 0388 053 00 000 2636
Bank: South Indian Bank,https://msfssoutheast.org/
St. Paul’s Seminary,
Tiruchirapalli – 620 001, Tamilnadu, India
SWIFT CODE: SOININ 55
2. When money is sent FROM INDIA :
Name : TAMILNADU – PONDICHERRY FRANSALIAN SOCIETY
A/C No:0388 053 00 000 2252
Bank : South Indian Bank,
St. Paul’s Seminary,
Tiruchirapalli – 620 001, Tamilnadu, India
IFSC : SIBL0000388
As part of the on-going formation program, three days seminar for our confreres from first year to ten years of priesthood was organized from Oct 28th to Oct 31st, 2018 at Velankanni retreat center. There are 31confreres belonging to this group and 21 confreres attended the seminar. The resource persons for the seminar were: Rev. Dr. A. Lawrence, Missiology professor from St. Peter’s Pontifical theological Institute, Rev. Dr. Rudolf, Cmf, psychologist and counselor and Rev. Fr. Albert, Msfs from Goa, Pune province. The topics of talks and discussions were: The relevance of Missiology for us in today’s context, Emotional Intelligence for leadership, and Accountability and responsibility: the use of TALLY in accounting.
We started the program with Eucharistic adoration and rosary on October 28 Sunday. Our confreres were divided into three groups, who organized the day’s liturgy and class discussion. The resource persons did a wonderful job in their presentation and discussion of the topics. Our confreres enjoyed and profited from the three days program. It was a joyful moment of coming together with different groups of classmates for prayer, discussion, and sharing. As a whole, confreres expressed that they were happy and satisfied with the program and the presentation by the resource persons. They also expressed that such renewal seminar could be organized every year on different topics.
Fr. A. Santhiyagu
Church Blessing at Melapudur, the substation of Othaiyal Parish
On the evening of 16th November Othaiyal parish substation Melapudur had its Church blessings. The Newly built Sacred Heart Church was blessed by Most Rev. Dr. Antony Pappusamy, Archbishop of Madurai and it was inaugurated by Rev. Fr. K. Ignacimuthu, Provincial Superior of Our Province. Councilors, Confreres and Fathers from Virudhunagar, Nalattinputhur, and Ammapatti and nearby parishes were present. Faithful from nearby villagers also joined this joyful occasion. It was followed by Most Holy Eucharist Celebration presided over by Most Rev. Dr. Antony Pappusamy, Archbishop of Madurai. Fathers, sisters and a good number of faithful were also part of this celebration.
Fr. Antony Tharcius
Canonical Visitation – Sacred Heart Church, Kadayal
On 18th November, our Provincial paid his canonical visitation to the parish of Kadayal. With a simple welcome ceremony and lighting of the lamp, he was welcomed. He presided over the Holy Eucharistic celebration with the theme “Sunday of the Poor”. Provincial preached during the celebration on the theme of the day. After the mass, he visited the sub stations Kilathoor and Ponkingalai and met the people. Then he met the Pious Associations and the Laity Service Groups. In the evening, he had a dialogue with the Parish Council and the Religious Sisters, who work in the parish. Towards the end of the evening, we had a community meeting. He also checked the documents and records of the parish and the community. With words of appreciation, Fr. Provincial thanked the community members.
Fr. John De Britto
Fr. A. Christuraj has completed his Doctorate in Sociology on the Topic Social Media and Youth from the Periyar University. He was awarded Doctor of Philosophy by Mr. Banwarilal Purohit, the Honourable Governor of Tamilnadu on 27/11/2018. He remembers with gratitude all those who helped him and encouraged him during this period of research work, especially the provincial administrations of past and present, other fathers, community members, parents and friends.
In the name of our province, I congratulate Fr. A. Christuraj for his meritorious achievement and wish him all the best in his endeavors.
- Fr. S. Sahaya Jerald Abin – Superior, Msfs Provincialate, Trichy
- Dn. S. Anantha Prabu – All Saint’s Church, R S Nagar
- Dn. A. Motcha Richard – St. Mary’s Church, Mariapuram
MONTH OF DECEMBER
BIRTHDAYS OF OUR CONFRERES
|Fr. J. Packia Sathish Kumar
|Fr. P. Johnson Jeyabal
|Fr. S. Stephen Xavier
|Fr. P. Johnson Jeyabal
|Fr. N. Arokiaselvam
|Fr. S. Ashir Johnson
|Fr. A. Christu Raj
|Fr. M. Joseph Anish Kumar
|Fr. M. Darline
We wish them Happy Birthday and God’s Abundant Blessings upon them
ORDINATION ANNIVERSARY OF OUR CONFRERES
|Fr. Ignacimuthu K
|Fr. Christu Raj A
|Fr. John de Britto M
|Fr. Kanikkai Nathan D
|Fr. Arockiam S
|Fr. Joseph Anish Kumar M
|Fr. Arokiaselvam N
We congratulate and pray for them
LET US REMEMBER AND PRAY FOR THE DEAD
MSFS OBITUARY – DECEMBER
|Bro. Joseph Rannard
|Fr. Louis Orsier
|Fr. Albert Dangelmaier
|Bro. Jean Pierre Piccot
|Fr. Francois Guenard
|Fr. Blaise Deleaval
|Bro. Nicholas Appao
|Fr. Mathew Nadackal
|Bro. Paul Chauffat
|Fr. Joseph Lavorel
|Bro. John Cosgrove
|Fr. Jules Rey
|Fr. Ernest Thevenet
|Bro. Maxime Gendre
|Bro. Lawrence Botha
|Fr. Francois Decompoix
|Fr. Maria John Bosco
|Fr. Jean Grosfort
|Fr. Paul Samy
|Bro. Anton Betz
|Fr. Jacques Fulpin
|Bro. Laurentius Hein
|Fr. Jean Exartier
|Fr. Antoine Guillermin
|Bro. Joseph D’santos
|Bro. Anthony Monicum
|Fr. Jean Baptiste Salomon
|Fr. Vincent Coffy
|Bro. Augustine Vas
|Fr. Charles Polamarachetty
|Fr. Jules Contat
|Fr. Henri Grandjacques
|Fr. Johnn Paul Utz
|Fr. Sebastian Puthutundiyil
|Fr. Alphonse Grorod
|Fr. Jerome Ribeira
|Fr. Antoine Mordasini
|Fr. Francois Granjux
|Fr. Elie Meynet
Let Us Continue to Pray for the Deceased Members of Our Congregation
LET US PRAY FOR THE DEPARTED
May I request those who have not fulfilled the suffrages to do the same at the earliest. (Const. No.118; General Directory No.98)
- Mr. Arockianathan, aged 46, Brother-in-law of Fr. C. Sebastin Raj, expired on 13th October, 2018.
- Mr. Savarimuthu, Father of Fr. A. Jeya Raj, expired on 02nd November, 2018.
- Mrs. Annapushpam aged 86, Grandmother of Fr. M Rajkumar, expired on 15th November, 2018.
- Mr. Yesudasan (Devaraj), aged 65, Father of Fr. D. Sheen, expired on 16th November, 2018.
- Mr. Sundharam, aged 66, Uncle of Fr. C. Martin Kumar, expired on 26th November, 2018.
May their souls rest in peace!
|Meeting, Legal Cell, Chennai
|08.12.2018 & 09.12.2018
|Canonical visitation, All Saints Church, R. S. Nagar, Chennai
|10.12.2018 & 12.12.2018
|PIF meeting, Suvidya Governing Body meeting and Fr. Gabriel’s Memorial Lecture, Bangalore.
|15.12.2018 & 16.1.2018
|Canonical Visitations, Xavier’s Church, Virudhunagar
|22.12.2018 & 23.12.2018
|Canonical Visitation Church of our Lady of Perpetual Help, Nalattinputhur
|Christmas Mass, SFS Church, Thirukogarnam
Yours Fraternally in Christ,
Rev. Fr. K. Ignacimuthu, Msfs
THOUGHTS FOR REFLECTION AND MEDITATION
1. Bible Quote
15 Here is a trustworthy saying that deserves full acceptance: Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners—of whom I am the worst. 16 But for that very reason I was shown mercy so that in me, the worst of sinners, Christ Jesus might display his immense patience as an example for those who would believe in him and receive eternal life. 17 Now to the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only God, be honor and glory forever and ever. Amen.
-1 Timothy 1:15-17
2. Salesian Thought
“Half an hour’s meditation each day is essential, except when you are busy. Then a full hour is needed.”
Don’t have time to pray? That means you need to pray even longer than usual. It seems counterintuitive, but it’s actually true—when we are overscheduled and overstressed, the only way we can survive is if we abandon ourselves to God. Time spent in prayer will help us to step back and see our lives more clearly, and we will be able to discern which things deserve our attention and which things just aren’t necessary. Only prayer will help us get our priorities in order.
-Saint Francis de Sales
3. Straight from the heart of fr. Peter Marie Mermier
I am going to tell you that you are at life’s high noon where it is practically never dark and there’s no rest, no recreation. It’s the time which St. Paul calls the time of salvation; it’s a crowded time destined to fill the emptiness of time past and to produce those great efforts which make ready for the end.
Monsieur Mermier’s letters to Sister Jeanne Belleville, June & July 1856 AF.
4. A Thought From Great Poet Thiruvalluvar
ஒழுக்கம் விழுப்பந் தரலான் ஒழுக்கம்
உயிரினும் ஓம்பப் படும்.
ஒருவர்க்கு உயர்வு தரக் கூடியது ஒழுக்கம் என்பதால் அந்த ஒழுக்கமே உயிரை விட மேலானதாகப் போற்றப்படுகிறது.
‘Decorum’ gives especial excellence; with greater care
‘Decorum’ should men guard than life, which all men share
Propriety of conduct leads to eminence, it should therefore be preserved
more carefully than life
Ozhukkam Vizhuppan Tharalaan Ozhukkam
Uyirinum Ompap Patum