2021-01-15 EAST TIMOR

Farewell and Thank You to Br. João Batista Pereira

Br. Darren Burge, in name of the Province of Australia, says thanks to Br. João Batista, from Brasil Centro-Sul, in Timor Leste since August 2018. He finished his mission and is going back to Brasil. Here down you can read the words of Br. Darren.


Joao generously took up the call from his Provincial in 2018 to make a significant change in his life by relocating to Timor Leste. Joao began his time in the Australian Province in the community at Eastwood in order to learn English where he quickly adapted to the local culture and contributed to the community in his own quiet way. The brothers appreciated his creative culinary skills, pleasant manner, and simple fraternal presence.

Since his arrival at the formation house in Baucau in August 2018, Joao has been a wonderful mentor and companion to our candidates. The key to his path to successful application of his skills in Baucau was his early commitment to learning the local language of Tetum.
Joao possesses a wonderful way of walking with young people. He has been present to them as brother with simplicity, joy and humility. He has a great capacity to connect with young people and get them involved in projects.

With his background in Marist Youth Ministry, Joao has provided our young men with an excellent theological platform for understanding the mission of educating and evangelising youth in Timor Leste in the Marist way. Our candidates have received a good grounding in Marist apostolic spirituality. Joao has also accompanied the Aspirants on their regular weekly pastoral experiences, mainly to the special school for hearing impaired children. His passion and love for children and young people has rubbed off on them and their enthusiasm to be present in the lives of the least favoured in Timor Leste.

In community prayer, Joao has made every effort to bring daily scripture alive in both Tetum and Portuguese. At times, the chapel has been transformed into the shore of lake Galilee, complete with fishing nets, a boat and the daily catch, or the upper room of the Last Supper. All the major feast days and Marist anniversaries have been moments of rich spiritual and liturgical celebration. Joao has combined art, music, audio-visual and rich symbolism, using anything he can get his hands on, to impress on our young men the immense love that God has for them and wants them to share with others.

Joao has also supported and mentored our developing Marist Youth Ministry program at our ICFP Teachers Formation Institute. Having worked many years in the Brazilian equivalent of this (PJM), Joao has been able to help with a strong establishment of this program.
Joao has brought the gift of his culinary skills and artistry to the community. Not one birthday has gone by these past few years without Joao creating an amazing cake. The celebration of birthdays is not a common practice within the Timorese culture, so our candidates have been deeply touched and overjoyed by the effort and detail with which Joao has gone to in making these moments memorable. He will be missed for his culinary skills!

We wish Joao all the best as he prepares to take up a new ministry in his Province of Brazil Central Sul, specifically in the city of Brasilia.

On behalf of Peter Carroll, the Provincial Council, and the brothers within the province, I offer him our grateful thanks for the gift of his brotherhood and helping to write a rich part of the story of our Marist life and mission in Timor Leste. He will be greatly missed.


Boletín Provincial México Central, Nº 44...


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