(India) Five of our Young Redemptorists from the Province of Bangalore, Fathers Prem Kumar, Vijay Kumar, Robin Kumar, Abhay Kullu, and Johnson, were commissioned to be witnesses of the Most Holy Redeemer on 24th April during the 9.15 am Mass at Holy Ghost Church, Bangalore, India. The Solemn celebration was officiated by Fr. Edward Joseph, Provincial of the Bangalore Province, along with the directors of the Pastoral Year (A year of formation to aid newly ordained Redemptorists to make their transition to Ministry) Frs. George Puthenpura and Joseph Royan, the Parish Clergy and confreres from the province.
The Commissioning of young Redemptorists which usually takes place on the Second Sunday of Easter is a culmination of a yearlong formation preparing them to be effective ministers of the Word and equip them with skills required to make their transition to ministry to the wounded world in line with the pastoral priorities of the Province of Bangalore and Vice-Province of Majella.
The newly ordained from the Province of Bangalore, Fathers Prem Kumar, Vijay Kumar, Robin Kumar, Abhay Kullu, and Johnson, and from the Vice-Province of Majella, Fathers Dony Cardoza, Savio Fernandes, Ashwil Dias, and Joyan DaCosta began their pastoral year on 5th July 2021. During this year-long Formation under the guidance of their Director Fr. George Puthenpura and Assistant Directors Joseph Royan and Juvy Andrade, the young Redemptorists were trained to write and preach Mission sermons, conduct School and College retreats and orientation sessions. During this year they were also equipped with other skills required for ministry. In spite of the pandemic, they were able to successfully and safely conduct School and College retreats, orientation programs, and Parish Missions both in English and Vernacular languages during the season of Advent and Lent.
Having successfully completed their Pastoral year (Transition to Ministry), Five of our Young Redemptorists were commissioned to have a preference for the situation where there is pastoral need, that is, evangelization in the strict sense, together with the choice in favor of the poor (Const.5), to be apostles of conversion, with the chief object of their preaching to lead God’s people to a radical choice regarding their life – decision for Christ – and draw them firmly and gently to a continual and total conversion (Const. 11) and to respond to the cry of the poor and the oppressed and search for ways to help them so that they themselves will be able to overcome the evils that oppress them, especially in their proclamation of the Word (Stat. 9b).
At the end of the Commissioning service, the five young Redemptorists of the Province of Bangalore were handed over the Mission Cross to spare no effort to arrive at a total gift of themselves to Christ who first loved us and to offer His plentiful redemption to all (Const. 56). They were then handed the Holy Bible for the redeeming grace of Jesus Christ and His plentiful redemption to be the goal of all their witness and proclamation.
Best wishes and prayers for our newly commissioned young Redemptorists as they undertake various ministries and responsibilities in their respective communities to be effective witnesses of the Redeemer in Solidarity for Mission to the Wounded World. May they be as Redemptorist missionaries, Strong in faith, rejoicing in hope, burning with charity, on fire with zeal, in humility of heart and persevering in prayer, Redemptorists as apostolic men and genuine disciples of Saint Alphonsus follow Christ the Redeemer with hearts full of joy; denying themselves and always ready to undertake what is demanding, they share in the mystery of Christ and proclaim it in Gospel simplicity of life and language, that they may bring to people plentiful redemption” (Const. 20).
Fr. Joseph Royan, C.Ss.R
Province of Bangalore