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Marist Bulletin - Number 58



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Prayerful plea of Pope John Paul II for peace

Under banner headlines – “Anguishing times for the cause of peace” – on the front page of its March 20th edition, the Vatican daily “L’Osservatore Romano” quoted Pope John Paul’s remarks at his weekly general audience on March 19th: “May St. Joseph, patron of the universal Church, keep watch over the entire Christian community, and as a man of peace, obtain for people everywhere, and especially for everyone in imminent peril during this time of war, the priceless gift of peace and harmony.”
Justice and peace are of prime concern to us as members of the world community. As believers in Christ and Marists, we lift up our prayers to the Lord to grant us this gift of international cooperation. We reflect on the outbreak of war on March 20th, but also on so many other wars that are all but being ignored by the mass media, yet ongoing nonetheless, bloody and brutal – inhuman.
Lord, make us instruments of your peace!

At the Novitiate in Tudella, Sri Lanka

Five novices from India have made their first profession as Marist brothers at the Novitiate in Tudella, Sri Lanka. Brother Joseph Khangwibou is the first brother to come from Manipura, a State in northeastern India. The February 15th ceremony was conducted in Indian and Sinhalese, using fitting symbols and rituals involving incense, flowers, and candles. Among others attending the ceremony were Brothers Michael de Waas, Provincial of Sri Lanka, Ray Arthur, Visitor for India, and Ranjith, Master of Novices. Brother Chinna Devadoss is the Sector Leader.

New Secretary General

The General Council has named Brother Jean Ronzon to be the new Secretary General. He succeeds Brother Richard Dunleavy, who will remain at his post until the fall. Brother Jean, 55, was born in Caselles- sur-Lyon, Loire, France. He’s belongs to the Province of MCO-ND de l’Hermitage. He worked as a catechist and teacher for many years, was a member of the Preparatory Commission for the General Chapter, a Chapter delegate, and a member of the editorial team that produced the Chapter Message. Currently he is Vice Provincial de his Province.

More General Council appointments

- Brother Jacques Scholte has been named to a second 3-year term as Provincial of West Central Europe, which includes Belgium, Germany, Great Britain, Holland and Ireland.
- Brother Javier Espinosa, from the Province of Central America, has been named Director of the Formation Center at El Escorial in Spain, beginning in July 2003. He succeeds Brother Santiago Cisneros, also from the Province of Central America.
- Brother Teófilo Minga, from the Province de Portugal, has been named Assistant Director of the El Escorial Center, beginning in January 2003. He succeeds Brother Félix Rodríguez from the Province of Catalunya.
- Brothers David Aranda, Province of Levante in Spain, and Amabile Gentile Biazus, Province of Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil have been named Director and Assistant Director respectively for the Third Age Program for Spanish and Portuguese-speaking brothers to be held in Manziana, Italy from August 16 to October 17, 2003.

Bureau of International Solidarity

In early March Brother Dominick Pujia from the Province of Poughkeepsie, USA arrived at the Generalate to assume his position as the new Director of BIS – the International Bureau of Solidarity – succeeding Brother Allen Sherry. Dominick is 52 years old and comes from Yonkers NY, USA. He has been a member of Youth and Family Life Commissions in two US Dioceses, a Provincial Councilor, and a high school teacher, and has served on Provincial commissions for addressing the needs of the poor. In the coming weeks, Dominick and Allen will work closely together to insure a smooth transition.

Marist Colloquium in Europe

The General Council’s Commission for Marist Mission, working together with the Commission for the Laity, is organizing a European colloquium to be held at Notre Dame de l’Hermitage in France from December 26– 31, using a dynamic and a participatory pro-cess open to a small group of people from each Province.
Things will get underway with a celebration of the Hundredth Anniversary of France’s Combes Law, which had such significant consequences in the life of our Congregation.
This colloquium is part of a process that will culminate in an International Marist Mission Assembly in 2007, to be preceded by regional gatherings in Europe in 2003, Africa 2004, Asia-Oceania 2005, and the Americas in 2006.

Marist spirituality program

January 27th saw the start of the spirituality course at El Escorial, bringing together 11 brothers from various Provinces and another four as members of the organizing team.
The first week was devoted to forming community, and this was followed by a week of gaining greater insight into Marist Apostolic Spirituality. After that, talks on the Enneagram, given by Brother Lluís Serra, provided a travel guide. The fourth week focused on the second stage in life.
Prayer and affability are two mainstays of this ongoing experience.

Province of Río de la Plata, Argentina

This is a weeklong gathering of youth 16 and 17 years of age who have already been involved in Campus Ministry activities at their high schools. The aim is to offer them an opportunity to enjoy an experience in community, taking as an ideal and inspiration the fraternity, work, and prayer of St. Marcellin and the first brothers at the Hermitage. About 40 young people, together with their moderators and two brothers providing accompaniment, spent from February 3rd to 10th experiencing this great opportunity for personal growth.

- Brother Fergus McCann died on March 18th in Campbelltown NSW, Australia at the age of 90. He served on the staff of the Second Novitiate in Fribourg, Switzerland for 11 years. In 1983, he was a member of the Constitutions Commission.
- Great political instability is causing perilous times in the Central African Republic. We’re receiving alarming news reports one after another.
- Brother Francis McGrath from the Marist community of Ashgrove, Brisbane, Australia has been named editor-in-chief of the project for publishing the letters and diaries of Cardinal John Henry Newman. Francis has an MA from Boston College in the US and is the first Australian to earn a doctorate in Newman Studies at Oxford University in England. He is the author of the book John Henry Newman: Universal Revelation, published by Burns and Oates in 1997.
- Brother Charles Howard, former Superior General, is currently working at the Novitiate in Zimbabwe.
- The brothers in Hopeville, Nigeria, have been running very successful rehabilitation programs for physically handicapped boys and girls, with good results in finding work for them.
- In 2003 Argentina is celebrating the Hundredth Anniversary of the Marist brothers’ arrival in the country, using the slogan “100 years of building on the dream of Champagnat”
- Ivory Coast. Various sources have confirmed the murder of Pascal, the Mathematics teacher of the secondary school in Korhogo, and also of his son. Other accounts indicate the whole family may have perished. At the new high school in Bouake it seems that UNICEF has set up an office, a reason to hope for better days ahead.
- March 8th saw the start of an initial formation program in Pakistan. During the Eucharist, the aspirants received a Bible and a Marist insignia. Afterwards, there were plenty of “gulabga-tripula,” classic Pakistani sweets.
- Pope John Paul’s message for the XVIII World Youth Day to be celebrated in every diocese on Palm Sunday 2003 has just been published. The Pope reminds us that the theme chosen, “Here is your mother,” is tied in with the Year of the Rosary that he proclaimed on October 16, 2002.
John Paul also announced the themes for the XIX World Youth Day in 2004, “We want to see Jesus,” and for the XX World Youth Days to be held in Cologne, Germany in 2005, “We have come to adore Him.”
- The 3rd World Forum on Water has just taken place in Tokyo, Japan. One fact: more than 6,000 children die every day because they don’t have access to water safe to drink.

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