Saturday, May 30, 2015

At the Mercy of God

i watched this afternoon a new movie called San is a beautiful movie that all of us must watch. In the aftermath of a massive earthquake in California, a rescue-chopper pilot makes a dangerous journey across the state in order to rescue his daughter. San Andreas, the new disaster movie opening Friday, features gigantic earthquakes ripping California apart. But don't count on a lesson in accurate science. The movie features magnitude-9.6 and -9.1 earthquakes in California, which can't happen along the San Andreas fault, Jones said. A magnitude-8.3 quake is the upper limit that can occur along that fault, she added. Worldwide, the strongest quake ever measured was the magnitude-9.5 quake that hit Chile in 1960.
It give you a message that God is the creator and anything done against his creation is not very much appreciated. In a matter of few minutes eveything is destroyed by the earthquake. We human beingsbelieve in our achievements and developments but we forget that He is the One who has contrrol of everything. Ourr highrise buildings and great developmental projects are signs of our human intelligence and wisdom but the wisdom of God is superior to ours. We depend on his mercy and compassion. We need to acknowldege that He alone is supereme and almighty. We cannot take His place.
The recent earthquake in Nepal where about 10000 people were killed and they never ever thought that they would meet this fate. In the past too this kind of traedies have taken place and people have lost everything. I know it happened in the first year of my Ordination. I was posted to a Mission Place in Latur, Maharastra, India and the earthquake killed so many peole. When i visited the place i could see the massive destruction. Young and old all met the same fete. Some of them too young to die. Many had dreams of future life but all was gone. They never expected that their world would come to an end. But it happens. These days we hear about the earthquakes from the globe......there are other natual calamities which take place like floods etc....what control do we have over it in spite of our science and developments, progress and technology.....nothing.....we are simply at his mercy and compassion....we are fragile like glass and grass....should we not accept and recognize his power over us...should we neglect and sidline Him totally to the point of negating His existence.
The movie is really an eye opener. I always thank God for all the He has created on the earth. He has put everythiin at our service and for our good. We should use it rightly and wisely without playing with it and going against it. We know that we are not Masters and Creators but we are His creatures. We should kkep our place and give the highest place to Him, 

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Better cooperation better administration

I am now in the General council for last three years and gaining tremendous and valuable experiences. The animation of the Order or Province is totally different from each other but the roles we play are similar. But the smooth and effective functioning of the council very much depends on the entire council members. The constitutions are very clear about the role and responsibilities of the General, Provincial Minister and their councilors. The entire team functions for the order or Province. They have been given mandate by the chapter and they would have to work together and promote the good and unity of all friars. To work hand in hand is very much satisfying and rewarding. There are moments where it can be beyond our talents and gifts, it can be difficult to agree to certain issues and points but we need to keep in mind the common good. It is not my ego and selfishness that should dominate but the good of the Order. Sometimes the councilor feels that his voice is not heard or left out from taking important decisions. From the part of the councilors it is very important to learn how to communicate and collaborate with the entire team. It is not power but service that is expected of the entire team. When the service becomes power then the team begins to behave like political parties

The best provincial council is the one which learns to communicates within and without. They communicate everything and nothing is secrete within, except they have to maintain secrets about the decisions taken. The healthy council would be the one which expresses feelings together. They nurse any bad feelings but allow themselves to be a bridge of communication.

The Council plays no blame game: It may happen that the tendency to blame each other for failures or some targets not achieved within a stipulated times. It is not the responsibility of one person but the entire team that is involved in making a decision and so the team must feel responsible for achieving the goals. The team takes upon themselves the responsibility of guiding and animating the provinces and the members. The councilors should not be just mere spectator or a voter in the council but be a creative contributor. He is not just to attend the council but the council comes prepared for the meeting. He shares his valuable opinion in the council. When he does the above he would never blame anyone in the team.

The council respects each members contribution: The team builds up a bond when they feel accepted and appreciated for their contribution and ideas, for suggestions and expertise offered. The entire council may not be intellectually sound and experts in the entire field but whatever they share goes to build the province and allows the council to arrive at a solution, which would be beneficial for the entire province. So one need not be a MBA student to be a councilor but it is enough that one has sufficient knowledge of the history of the Order, deep study of the constitutions and capuchin charism and spirituality.

The council doesn’t throw weight around: There may be a chance for one who is smart and has more knowledge of the secular world to dominate the proceedings of the council. It is dangerous for the council to arrive at a right decision if this superstar and all knowing councilor demands his ideas and suggestions to be the best ones. The entire council in humility keeping in mind the good of the entire

Wednesday, May 27, 2015


As I am going round in India I am surprised to see many beautiful and wonderful things happening in this part of the world. The Indians are no longer what there were projected and thought of by the rest of the world. The face of Indian society has tremendously changed for good. The successive governments have worked out hard and given a right direction to the entire nation. The economic success has brought a lot of blessings to many here. The development process is fast and very democratic. The rural people now taste the glory of shining India. There are so many good things happing in India. It is good for the unity and security of Indian society. The multicultural and lingual, multilingual and various traditions has really kept India going strong.  The picture is very positive. If it goes on at this rate I am sure India will shine more and more. The most important thing is to make India corruption free. Let everyone participate in this process.

But I was also shocked and taken aback to see many negative aspects in this shining India. The poverty is still looming over the unfortunate ones. Though the government tries its best to eliminate poverty somehow it is there. There are good many reasons, which we need to see them in between the lines. The Higher and special Education, which is now available everywhere in India, is beyond the reach of the poor ones. If you have money you can have access to higher education.  Not that our government cannot afford to educated these poor ones who are highly capable and intelligent, innovative and creative. Somehow the economic conditions make them to remain where they are.

Celebrations are part of our rich Indian culture and heritage We are proud to celebrate and promote our unity. These celebrations sometimes are organized in a very big way with big expenditures. Mostly riche and even the middle class organize these celebrations. Sometimes the poor ones also contribute towards these celebrations.  My question is: do we need to spend such a huge amount of money for a one-day celebration? When there are some many who go hungry to bed? Can we not spend that money on poor people’s education? Can we not make rural areas education hubs so that the children don’t have to go far away from their homes? Even political leaders spend huge amount of money for their party celebration. It is good to do so but in a moderate way. The growth of the nation depends also on the poor and their contribution. Let us not have grand celebrations at their cost. Let us contribute something towards their welfare and development.

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Bishop Peter OFMCAP

Bishop Peter Celestine. Bp.Emeritus of Jammu-Srinagar, departed to his heavenly home today at  4 am . May his soul rest in Peace. Details later.Bishop Emeritus of Jammu and Kasmir Peter Celestine OFM Cap expired this morning 04.30  Assisi Capuchin Ashram Bharananganam. Funeral will be On Sat 10 am.Born 28/6/1938...Vested 18/5/1959...Simple prof 19/5/1960...Sole prof19/5/1963...ordained 03/10/1966...

Saturday, May 23, 2015

Happy Feast of the Pentecost

 After the death of the Lord the disciples thought like everything is over with these feelings in heart they hid themselves but St. John says that the Lord stood among them. Resurrected Jesus was different from the historical Jesus. He through the power of the Holy Spirit was with and amidst the apostles.

He greets them with the peace of the Holy Spirit. The apostles for a moment were happy and joyful to see the Lord Jesus standing among them. The Lord did not want to fill them up with the short happiness and joy but the everlasting one with the presence of the Holy Spirit.
 Then the Lords sends them to be witness of the good news in the world as He himself did it. In order to be witness the Holy Spirit sends them to the entire world. To be the witnesses of the resurrected Lord the apostles did need the power and strength of the Holy spirit.

Jesus not only spoke about the Holy spirit with the apostles but He breathed on them that they may receive the Holy spirit.

 The feast of the Holy spirit is celebrated as the birthday of the Mother Church. This day is written with golden letters in the life of the Church. 

On this day the Holy Spirit filled the hearts and minds of the Apostles and made them fearless. They proclaimed the good news of the Risen Lord

Provincial Curia of Pavantama, Friars Meet and Celebration of the Feast of Pentecost

The community of the provincial curia. They are 7 of them out of which one is studying civil law. The community is involved in the Province administration as well as looking after the parish. 
 Last evening i concluded the visitation of the curia with a common meeting.

The provincial Minister Br. Thomas and Br. Saji who is presenting to the friars the financial situation of the province

 Friars listening and taking down some points to take home....

 This morning we had an assembly of the friars and there were more than 40 friars present. we had a long season from 9am to 11am. I gave my concluding remarks to the assembly.
 The province celebrates its patron feast Pavanatma, Holy Spirit

Novitiate House, Kasargod, Kerala

Last year all the three Provinces of Syro Malbar in Kerala had a very good number of Novices. They were around 35 and all of them could not be accommodated in one Novitiate House in St. Joseph so all the three provinces decided to divide the group. Pavanatma accepted one group and housed them in Kasargod. The friary was already ready and had to make some renovations. It is an ideal place as it is very much silent and quite place. There are good number of parishes around and majority of the people in the area are catholics. 
 The house is amidst a garden....lovely place....the house is an ideal place for Novitiate....but this year the number is small so they have it in one place

 The friars play shuttle everyday along with some youth of the parish....this year there are no novices....

 The garden has a variety of flowers and fruits too....the friars work hard in the garden....

 Br. E.K. Joseph is the Novice master and in the middle is the Guardian and provincial councilor....the young friar is preacher and doing his Msc in psychology
 What a smile.....keep it up

 the friars have a lot of ministry here but due to formation they are not able to take up much but when free they do take up...

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

VIMALAGIRI Ashram and Retreat centre, Gritty

The capuchin friars came here in 1998 and began preaching to the local church. The friars were effective in their preaching the word of God. Br. Armandus, a holy man who with the team of friars began to move around and soon the place began to be frequented by people from near and far. He was a holy and spiritual man. he was instrumental in pushing forward the charismatic movement in this part of the state. He is now resting in peace but people flock to his tomb and considered by the people as a saint. the good work of the friars has been carried out by a team of good preachers. Pavanatma is blessed with young fiery preachers. 
 The friars conduct every week a residential retreat and for which about 100 people come. during the vacations the number goes beyond two hundred people. This week there are 276 people from all over India. The friars preach with the collaboration of lay people too. It is well organized centre and many who come here spread the good word around. The retreat starts on Monday and finishes on Thursday is a wonderful ministry. Not just preaching but the friars do the counseling as well as hearing the confessions...
 This is the friary where four friars reside....they are busy the whole is good to see the young friars so committed to the preaching of word of God and reaching out to the troubled people....
 Friar Armandus who is buried here attracts a lot of people.....he was a simple and God fearing man....he just spent his life in preaching and hearing confessions....we pray that the friars who have began the cause of his sainthood....may speed up fast...

 Friars Josep, Joseph Bosco, Guardian Jose, JIJI and Biju...all of them are preachers.....

Monday, May 18, 2015


Shanti Ashram is outside the city of Calicut....but it is on the national highway and easy access to the city. Here the friars are engaged in multiple ministries.....we have a parish, friary, Home for the destitute and school......there are many men who are looked after by the trust....and the school is also run by the trust.....
 The friary is small but a good place to live in....recently it has been renovated.....
 This is a marriage hall of the Parish.....many people prefer to have their parties in this belongs to the in Kerala the management of the parish is looked after by the trustees and financial matters too are dealt by them....

 imposing and beautiful church on the national highway...attracts everyones attention...dedicated to st. Anthony of Padua.....friars are available for the the confession and other ministry...
 The community members,,,,,Biju is the guardian, George is the vicar Provincial.....Jible, who looks after the Meida house along with George....Santhosh is the newly ordained priest friar....

 Media house is newly built and Friars George and Jible have moved into this friary cum Media is in the heart of the city of calicut....
 George and Jible....working together....publishing and promoting spiritual as well as secular books...