On Sunday evening, Oct. 30th, the Thai confreres held a reception for the Redemptorist delegates who have gathered from around the world. At the entrance to the new Aula Capitularum there was a reception with many, many Thai delicacies, including coconut milk fresh from the coconuts. Even a sudden downpour did not bother us under the overhanging roof!
We were then invited into the large meeting room where Fr. Joe Apisit, the Thai provincial, welcomed one and all and introduced us to a ‘show’ put on mainly by the children of the schools run by the Redemptorists. There was a terrific orchestra along with presentations in song and dance by various groups of children—from the youngest in the Children’s Village to those in the various schools for the Disabled.
The wheelchair dance, the songs by the blind students and the Philippino choir (which sings at Sunday Masses) were all beautiful and deeply touching. And when the young students handed out flowers to each delegate—bowing, in the respectful manner of Thailand, with their hands together before their faces—everybody was touched by grace. Seeing these students so full of life and enthusiasm (and talent) is a tremendous affirmation of life, of hope, and of the joy that should accompany the Christian in daily life.
Fr. Mark Miller, CSsR