Papua New Guinea
Retired teachers wanted for 3 months in Papua New Guinea
VUVU HIGH SCHOOL
is located in Rabaul but up in the hills, so it avoids the
extremes of temperatures of the coast. Recently the High School
has been given permission to go to Senior High School Level.
The parents are delighted but the teachers are all trained
to teach only up to Year Ten. We are looking for teachers
who are prepared to go to Vuvu and assist these teachers adjust
to the senior classes. If you are retired and have a bit of
energy and would like to assist our missions in PNG and have
the time to spend three months advising the teachers about
the senior syllabus then you would be welcome to stay with
the Brothers for a few months and do this very rewarding work.
Science, Maths and English are the main concerns but if you
have expertise in another field, and are interested, please
contact Br Rod Ellyard on 9365 2804 or via email at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Opening of a new novitiate in Stellenbosch, South Africa
Br Philip Into has sent this letter to Brothers
around the world celebrating the opening of a third novitiate
on the African continent...
A SHORT WHILE AGO,
the Pan African Leaders met in Accra, Ghana, and sent us a
letter asking permission for the setting up of a third novitiate
in Africa. This was to cater for the larger numbers currently
in the Pre-Novitiate Houses in the various regions of the
While large numbers are not necessarily a sign of God's favour,
we are delighted with the quality of the men asking to walk
our way of life. This is also the result of the renewed emphasis
on Seeking New Brothers - the call of the recent Congregation
Chapter - and the hard work and enthusiasm of the vocation
postulators in Africa.
Therefore it is with great joy that I announce the opening
of our third novitiate in Stellenbosch, South Africa. I pray
that it truly becomes a house of God and a centre of spirituality,
where our new members are accompanied in their quest for God.
Br John Holden from the Canadian Province, who has been working
in Sierra Leone for the past few years, has been asked to
take on the mantle of Director of Novices. I thank John for
his willingness to accept this challenging and vital ministry.
I also thank Br Michael de Klerk and the Brothers from South
Africa and Zimbabwe who have provided the site for the new
novitiate. Their generosity is greatly appreciated.
Brothers, I ask that you circulate this information among
all our Brothers and ask them to pray for those who will be
living and working here from January, 2005.
With every prayerful good wish,
Your Brother in Jesus and Blessed Edmund,
Philip Pinto cfc
Oceania Conference announced for 2006 "Shaping
FOLLOWING the Inter-Province Leadership Committee
meeting in Adelaide earlier this month, Shaping Our Future
2006 has been put forward as a major event to be attended
by all Christian Brothers in Oceania during the first half
The Shaping Our Future Committee Oceania (SOFCO) has been
meeting formally since May last year.
Brothers Luke Quinn and Laurie Needham travelled to Canada
in early July to attend a similar gathering of North American
The North American gathering led to the approval of a restructure
of the three North American Provinces (Canada, Eastern and
Western USA), in July 2005. The three Provinces will join
to become one Province. A region in Latin America will be
accountable to this new Province.
The September 2004 SOFCO Newsletter reports that planning,
prayer and liturgy, and discernment processes from the North
American meeting will be applied to the Oceania gathering.
The Newsletter reflects on the name Shaping Our Future, which
it says "suggests that there is a future for Christian
Brotherhood in Oceania".
It concludes: "While it is not a forum for final decisions,
the gathering will certainly be a very significant part of
"the shaping" of 'new wineskins for new wine' (cf
The Heart of Being Brother document from the 2002 Congregation
Edmund Rice Despatches 23 September 2004
the Postulator's Desk
The tribute paid to Edmund Rice from his Confessor
Br Donal Blake, Postulator for the Cause of
Blessed Edmund Rice, provides a monthly update on the Congregation
Leadership Team website
in Rome. His latest bulletin includes this interesting commentary
on the views of Blessed Edmund's Confessor, Fr Richard Fitzgerald...
Br Donal Blake
Rev. Fr Richard Fitzgerald, Administrator of the Cathedral
in Waterford, was confessor to the Mount Sion community during
Edmund's period of retirement in Waterford, 1838-1844. As
such he was confidant of Edmund's final reaching towards God
in his later years. He is the one who had to make the painful
decision in 1843 that because of Edmund's comatose condition
he was no longer permitted to receive the Eucharist. He it
was who administered the Last Rites to the dying Founder on
Sunday, 25 August. Edmund died on the following Thursday,
29 August, Feast of the Martyrdom of St John the Baptist.
When it was decided to hold a Month's Mind in Waterford Cathedral
on 1 October 1844, to publicly honour Edmund's memory, Fr
Fitzgerald was the one chosen by the Bishop to preach the
panegyric before a crowded congregation on this very public
occasion. It would be true to say that Fr Fitzgerald, because
of his privileged position as Edmund's confessor, knew his
subject's inner journey in a way that mere observers could
not. Here are some extracts from his long sermon:
were impossible to exaggerate the blessings that have accrued
to society through the agency of the educational establishments
that have been reared by Edmund Rice's piety, his energy and
his zeal. His charity has not been confined to his own loved
land; it went beyond the seas and has been felt in the sister
country and in the distant colonies. In a special manner he
is our benefactor. Need I say that he requires not the aid
of the sculptor or the painter. For as long as religion shall
be reverenced among us, as long as civilization shall be prized
and cherished, as long as exalted patriotism shall be accounted
a virtue, the name of Edmund Ignatius Rice will be held in
He was called
upon to fulfil a great and exalted mission and he succeeded,
unassisted by royal patronage or state provision. Towards
the close of the last century when he formed the resolution
of renouncing the world and devoting himself to the gratuitous
instruction of the poor, who could have imagined that his
unpretentious exertions would secure to his country the most
valuable of her institutions? Who could have recognised in
the infant establishment in our own city, the germ of a system
that was to exercise a wide and blessed sway on the destinies
of our countrymen? But it pleased Heaven that the Institute
should have its origin in humility, lest we should ascribe
to man what was accomplished by the power and favour of God
It is somewhat
extraordinary that the good and great man who founded this
noble Institute was not called away to enjoy his reward until
he had seen his labours crowned with such marvellous success.
In my mind it should be regarded as a foretaste, deigned to
him while on earth, of that ineffable happiness with which
the all-bountiful God rewards the just. And if the justice
of God awards an amount of glory commensurate with our merit,
should we not hope that our venerable Founder is in the possession
of the glory described in the promise made through the mouth
of the prophet Daniel: 'They that instruct many to justice
shall shine as stars for all eternity.'"
Fine words of praise indeed from someone who knew Edmund's
spiritual life intimately during the twilight years of his
long life! Should it not inspire us today to press on with
our noble task of seeing Edmund fully honoured in the near
future with the title, 'Saint Edmund'! Keep up the good work!
May God bless you and Blessed Edmund guide you!
Donal S. Blake CFC