First Years to Five Years
An animation programme for the Oblates (from first year to five years priesthood) was held at “Sangamam” on the 10th of September, 2018. Rev. Fr. Mathew Purayidom, OFM Capuchin was the guest speaker. He succinctly encapsulated his reflection in three words – TCL.
He said that ‘T’ stand for trust in the Lord through His Word and Eucharist; taste and see the Lord how sweet He is; and treasure the Lord always in and through the daily situations.
He said that ‘L’ stand for – to listen to the Lord; learn through difficulties and on questions about faith we become prepared; and to love the Lord in our encounter with the people.
He said that ‘C’ stand for – to consult the Lord in prayer and the respective superiors of the community thus, everyone becomes co-responsible, communion with the Lord and conversion of ourselves with the Lord.
Fr. Mathew finally guided the participants to realize the maturity and the creativity necessary in the missions through certain concrete examples. Thus, it will lead us to a sense of responsibility and accountability. At last the life remains dependent always on the Lord.
Having listened to him, the Oblates had a short break and then continued the sharing of the pastoral experiences of each one. It became the opportunity to create an atmosphere for challenging and encouraging each other for a mature growth as the outcome of the talk. Having fixed the date for next gathering and with the delicious lunch we wound up the meeting.
Six Years to Ten Years
There was also another animation programme for the Oblates (from six years to ten years of priesthood) held on September 24, 2018 at Thodarpaham, Jaffna. Once again, Rev. Fr. Mathew Purayidom OFM Con. was invited as the resource. This time Fr. Mathew based his talk on Pope Francis’ talk to a group of priests, religious and seminarians in Palermo, Italy, Sept. 15, 2018. In his talk, Pope Francis warned them against living a double life. Basing Pope Francis’ talk, Fr. Mathew highlighted the following points:
- – The witness is only one therefore, the priest has to undertake a daily battle against his vices and against all alienating worldliness. Priest is a man of God 24 hours a day, not only when wearing vestments; the liturgy is life for priest, not just a ritual.
- – Simplicity is the eloquent sign of a life consecrated to the Lord. People look for simplicity in priests and in consecrated men and women. People’s scandals are when they see worldly priest, with the spirit of the world and when they see a priest who is like “an executive,” rather than a pastor.
- – Since the clericalism is to think the Church is “above the world”, every form of clericalism must be banned. It is one of the most difficult perversions to remove today.
- – Since priests and religious are meant to be people of service they need to shun from careerism, which is about power.
- – Condemning gossip and division, Pope Francis says, “always the error must be distinguished from the one who commits it,” and the people should be loved and treated as brothers and sisters.
After the talk, there was a time for clarification and discussion; then break for tea followed by Eucharistic adoration and lunch. As the Oblates dispersed, Fr. Provincial thanked the Oblates and announced that the next gathering will be in view of preparation for Christmas in the season of Advent.
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