By Theodore Kabundi
As a new birth brings joy and happiness in a family, so our community always experiences the same feelings every August with the arrival of newly professed brothers who are assigned to the Philippines by our General Direction in Rome. The month of August or September is special for us because our Xaverian International Theologate of Asia welcomes the brothers who usually bring joy and new breathe in the routine of our life and activities. Certainly their presence changes in a way or another many things in our community such as: the language, the sharing of experiences, and news from their countries of origin. It is always a kind of new beginning and renewal of commitment for the other members of the community.
For this year 2013, the General Direction assigned to our Theologate three students and a newly ordained priest from Brazil. Now we let them introduce themselves as they also share about their aspirations and feelings as they begin a new journey far away from their country of origin.
Bro. Eko Sugiyanto, Indonesia
I was born on July 28, 1981 in Indonesia. After my High School, I joined the Xaverian Missionaries in my country. I did my Noviciate in 2004 and made my first profession on the same year. As religious, I went through my philosophical studies and pastoral years through different exposures for six years 2006–2012. Last August, I arrived in the Philippines to pursue my theological studies.
Bro. Fokam Maurice, Cameroon
I was born on October 27, 1988 in Cameroon. After elementary and High School, I got my Bachelor’s degree in 2008. After this, I felt attracted by the religious and priestly life; so I decided to join the Xaverian Missionaries in 2008. After a propaedeutic year and three years of Philosophy, I went to the noviciate of Kinshasa wherein I made my first religious and missionary profession on August 15, 2013. Towards the end of that spiritual year in Congo, I was assigned to the Philippines to pursue my theological studies. The Biblical icon guiding my choice is Mk 1: 38 “Jesus replied, “Let us go somewhere else to the nearby villages so I can preach there also. That is why I have come.”
Bro. Ndiwe Christophe, Democratic Republic of Congo
I finished my High School in 2007 in Goma, the eastern part of Congo. Just after having my state diploma, I deeply felt the desire to consecrate my whole life to God by becoming religious in order to preach his Gospel everywhere. Impelled by this desire, I joined the Xaverian Missionaries on September 04, 2008 around 4pm in Bukavu. I started by one year of propaedeutic and three years of Philosophy before being admitted to the Noviciate in Kinshasa wherein I made my first religious and missionary profession on August 15, 2013. Towards the end of the novitiate, it pleased to our General Direction to assign me to the Philippines to pursue my theological studies. My Biblical icon in this journey is “Freely you have received; freely give” (Mt 10: 8). I hope to have a good experience of encountering God through my way of relating to the Philippine people and culture.
Fr. Cesar da Silva, Brazil
I was born on June 29, 1982 in a numerous family in South Brazil. My father passed away when I was still teenager so I grew up with my mother and siblings. Since my early age, I was brought up in the faith and life of the Christian community of my place and the desire to consecrate my life to God through his mission was born in these environments. After a long accompaniment and discernment, I joined the Xaverian Missionaries in 2003. After four years of philosophical studies in Curitiba, I went to Hortolandia for the novitiate where I got to strengthen and to deepen my vocational and missionary life. In the end of the novitiate, I was sent to Parma in Italy to study theology. This was a very significant moment in my journey as it was my first experience outside of Brazil. After having finished my theological studies, I made my perpetual profession in our St. Guido Maria Conforti Shrine and was ordained deacon in the Cathedral of Parma on December 8, 2012. On August 17, 2013 I was ordained priest in my home parish in Brazil and assigned to the Philippines.
On behalf of all our Xaverian family scattered all over the world and of our delegation, we wish you a meaning filled stay in the 7.107 islands of this country. As our former rector Fr. Eugene Pulcini used to say, “This is the best community and the best Delegation, for this is the one that really belongs to you.”
Mabuhay kayo sa Pilipinas!