Our missionaries with less than 10 years of priestly ordination gathered in Batam, Indonesia from the 24th to the 27th of October. The joyful fraternal meeting was convened by the committee for the accompaniment of the young clergy and followed the theme of the Scalabrinian year "making the world everyone's land". The attendance was very good, 22 confreres in Batam and 5 joined virtually. Due to the pandemic, our previous meetings were held virtually and the group was gratefully joyful for the opportunity to physically gather once again.
Meeting in Batam was particularly significant not only for being the last mission we have opened in our province but also because we had planned to have our provincial assembly there and it was not possible. We are very grateful for the welcoming hospitality from our confreres in Batam and the parishioner of the Divine Mercy Parish.
On the first day of the meeting, Fr. Provincial updated the group about the news in the province and gave us an input on the challenges of religious life in our times and our commitment to the evangelical counsels. Fr. Delmar also gave us a reflection on the significance of the canonization of Our Founder and our commitment to follow the steps of our Holy Founder strengthening our Scalabrinian identity and our sense of belonging to the family.
On the second day there was a visit to the former Galang refugee camp where around 250.000 refugees passed through from 1979 to 1996. Especially for our Vietnamese confreres, this visit was indeed very moving. A heartfelt prayer was offered at the camps' Vietnamese cemetery. In the afternoon, the group enjoyed an outing organized by the Scalabrinian Community of Batam and some volunteers of our mission.
On the third day the young clergy had the opportunity to individually share about their lives and ministry becoming the central part of the meeting due to the willingness to share in a fraternal and sincere way. The meeting was concluded allocating a short time for evaluation and varia.
Inspiring liturgies were actively participated and an inspiring Eucharistic celebration was offered on Thursday evening in our parish to celebrate the canonization of our founder and the 20th anniversary of the Scalabrinian presence in Indonesia. The celebration was followed by a dinner and socials with the parishioners in a very joyful and familiar atmosphere.
The group has indicated Vietnam as the venue for the next meeting in the last week of September 2024.
Fr. Delamar Silva, CS
Young Clergy Coordinator
Fr. Heribertus Mangkur, CS
Sub-coordinator in Asia
Fr. Luan Lang Kinh, CS
Sub-coordinator in Australi