(India) The Redemptorists Young Fathers Meeting of the 3 units in India was held for the first time from 9th to 12th October 2023. There were a total of 27 young fathers who were present for this meeting. These were ordained in the last seven years from 2016 onwards. The four days of experience at Nava Spoorthi Kendra, Bengaluru could be summed up in three words “Faith, fellowship and Fun”.
On the first day, the young confreres were able to share and process their journey since their time of transition. This was facilitated by Fr Juventius Andrade. The experience was enriching as we got the opportunity to share and listen to each other’s mission and pastoral experience and especially to know their learning and challenging moments as young Redemptorists. Some of the pastoral questions and challenges were also addressed so as to be more effective in ministry.
On the second and third day of the gathering, Fr. Joye James SJ, a Jesuit priest addressed the young confreres. The input sessions were varied and interesting as he journeyed with us on topics of team building; self-awareness and self-esteem, components of emotional intelligence, Discernment, Leadership, Child rights legislation in India, and prevention of sexual abuse and protection of those who survive these abuses.
These sessions helped the participants to be in touch with one’s feelings and emotions, and to have a better understanding of religious life while facing the problems of today.
As part of the gathering, the final day was a time to refresh ourselves. The Young Fathers’ meeting was indeed a fruitful one. Praying, sharing, playing football and cricket.
The overall experience of these days enabled us to celebrate our Redemptorist Vocation and being together has further strengthened the bond among us. We express our special thanks to Fr. John Mathew, the Vicar of the Province of Bangalore who celebrated the opening Eucharist. We are grateful to Frs. Sarath Maddineni and Juventius Andrade for organising the event and for accompanying us during these days.
Ashwil Dias C.SS.R.