Redemptorist General Superior meets with temporarily professed students in Asia and Oceania

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Fr Rogério Gomes, C.Ss.R., the General Superior of the Redemptorists, met with temporarily professed students of the Conference of Asia and Oceania via Zoom on September 2, 2023. The meeting was attended by seminarians from all over the region, including Australia, New Zealand, Vietnam, India, Indonesia, Sri Lanka, Singapore, the Philippines, and the mission on the mainland.

The meeting began with an introduction by Fr. Paul Vinh, C.Ss.R., the General Consultor, who explained the purpose and agenda of the meeting. After welcoming remarks from Fr General Superior Gomes and the General Council, the seminarians of the Theologate of Saint Alphonsus in Vietnam led the opening prayer. Next, each seminarian in the region introduced themselves. Finally, everyone watched a video presentation on the overall status of the Redemptorists in different continents around the world by all the general consultors.

After the video, Fr Gomes gave a message to all the seminarians. He began by saying that “joy and happiness” are the first ways that Redemptorists can manifest and witness to Christ. Second, he emphasized the uniqueness of each Redemptorist in the congregation. He said that each Redemptorist is a unique individual created by God, not just a number. Therefore, each person needs to know and understand their own uniqueness, as well as the call to give themselves to God (cf. Gen 12:1) that they have received. Fr Gomes encouraged the seminarians to educate themselves through study. Study is the way for each Redemptorist to decode the mysteries of faith and see the beauty of God. Study strengthens faith and goes deeper into one’s personal experience with God.

On community life, Fr Gomes reminded the seminarians that the theme of the congregation this year is “Dedicated to Community Life.” He said that the community should be a place where the brothers want to live, not a place where they do not want to return. Therefore, he invited each brother to care for the community where they live and to look to the generations of Redemptorists who have gone before in the congregation to continue those beautiful traditions.

Next, he invited everyone to collaborate actively with the Holy Spirit and to let the Spirit work in their lives. He emphasized that, in order to carry out their mission in the future, each Redemptorist needs to prepare well from the time they are still seminarians. This will make a difference in the way each person carries out their mission. Finally, General Superior Gomes sent a message to the seminarians to be courageous and move forward because the congregation always places its trust in them.

After the message from Fr Gomes, some seminarians from the Redemptorists in Asia and Oceania had questions for him about the training program and their concerns for the future mission of the congregation. Fr Gomes answered the questions and acknowledged the contributions of the seminarians to the training and mission of the congregation.

The meeting concluded with a prayer by Fr. Paul Vinh and a blessing from Fr Gomes. Despite the language barrier, the close, simple, and intimate atmosphere of the Redemptorist family spirit left a lasting impression on the seminarians of the Redemptorists in the entire Asia-Oceania region—especially the insights on study to serve the common mission of the congregation in the future.

The meeting was a valuable opportunity for the seminarians to hear from the General Superior and to learn more about the Redemptorist charism and mission. It was also an opportunity for the seminarians to share their own experiences and concerns and to get to know each other better.

The seminarians are grateful to the General Superior and the General Council for their time and attention. They are inspired by the General Superior’s message of joy, hope, and courage, and they are committed to living out the Redemptorist charism in the Asia-Oceania Conference.

The media team of the Theologate of Saint Alphonsus in Vietnam.
Translated by Duc Trung Vu, CSsR