Retreat at Mississauga August 14-18

For a full five days 25 Dehonians from both Canada and the United States listened, reflected, shared with another person and opened up in a small group what it is that binds us together spiritually. The reflections by Fr. Jim Schroeder, David Schimmel and Fr. John van den Hengel, the organizers of the retreat, helped that participants to reconnect with the spiritual life of Fr. Dehon and its current application. It was good to return to what in the last 50 years, since the chapters of renewal of 1973 and 1979, has come to us in the Rule of Life. As one of the participants said, °It feels as if I am now finally able to understand and enter into what we were given in the Rule of Life. Why has it taken me 50 years to appreciate and grasp what some saw way back then?” The retreat ended on Friday evening, August 18. The next retreat will be in given in Racine, WI, in May 2018.

Mississauga retreat 2017

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Frère Luc Coursol scj

On Saturday, August 12, the date of the death of our Founder, Frère Luc Coursol scj died in Montréal at the age of 66. The community will gather in Montréal on Tuesday August 22 to hold a wake service and on August 23 in St.-Janvier, Mirabel for the funeral rites.

Read here the tribute to Frère Luc from the Montréal community: 550098_Luc_Coursol

Luc Coursol

Visite au Salon funéraire (Memoria, 2645 boul. Henri-Bourassa Est, Montréal), mardi 22 août 2017, de 1400 à 17h00 et de 19h00 à 21h00.
Funérailles à l’église de St-Janvier (17737 rue Sacré-Coeur, Mirabel, QC), mercredi 23 août, à 11h00. La famille recevra parents et amis à compter de 10h00.
Inhumation a Grenville, Québec
The funeral arrangements for Luc are:

Visitation at Memoria Funeral Home (2645 East, Henri-Bourassa Blvd, Montréal), Tuesday, August 22nd, 2h00 PM-5h00PM and 7h00PM-9h00PM).
Funeral Mass: Wednesday, August 23rd, at 11h00 AM.at St-Janvier Church, 17737 Sacré-Coeur St, Mirabel, Quebec. The family will receive condolences from 10h00AM-11h00AM.
Burial at Grenville, Québec.

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July 2017

Regional Assembly

From October 2 (evening) to October 4 (noon) the Region will gather at Providence Spirituality Centre in Kingston for an assembly. It will give the Region a chance to discuss further the ten-year plan, the work of the Migration Commission, Vocations, finances, and our Region’s anniversaries. Roger Phaneuf and Peter Sanders celebrate their 50th anniversaries of ordination. So keep the dates open. Further information will be provided soon.

Theological Seminar in Yogyakarta

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Between July 20 to 25 Gustave Lulendo and John van den Hengel took part in the Theological Seminar: Charism and Devotions in Yogyakarta, Indonesia. All of the reports and pictures have been made available through the good services of the US Province communications. The papers delivered prior to the seminar and the summaries given during the Seminar will be published hopefully during the Fall. The work begun through this seminar is far from complete. We hope in the future to come back to the topic.

Here the final message of the seminar:

Dear Confreres,

From July 20 – 25, we were together in Yogyakarta (Indonesia) for the theological seminar of the Congregation which had as title “Charisms and devotions: Towards an inculturated Dehonian identity.” We were more than fifty confreres from more than twenty countries, an expression of a Congregation truly international.

The seminar – when put alongside those held at Lisbon (2008) on the Theologia cordis, at Brusque on the Missio cordis (2010) and at Taubaté (2014) on Anthropologia cordis – has succeeded in deepening the bond of our charism with the devotions which express it and give it form. We have confirmed the richness of the spiritual legacy of Fr. Dehon which needs to be re-stated each time again in new forms. At the same time, we have understood how our identity must express itself, of necessity, in plural ways in order to be in touch with different social and cultural forms.

The seminar was prepared by the work of the continental theological commissions (some constituted only recently) which they shared. Each presentation was largely worked out in its own context. Alongside listening to the discussions and the reflections, there were moments in which we were given the opportunity to see first hand some ecclesial and culturally significant experiences: the Mass with the renewal of vows at the scholasticate; the participation in the ballet of Ramayana in front of the Hindu temple Prambanan; the visit to the Buddhist temple Borobudur; the pilgrimage to the sanctuary of the Madonna at Sendansono and the one, built in Javanese style, dedicated to the Sacred Heart at Ganjuran. All this was possible thanks to the outstanding welcome and the perfect organization by the Indonesian Province. To them we owe a debt of sincere gratitude.

It was the task of the continental theological commissions to develop the richness of the intuitions of these days. But this presupposes a broader involvement of the whole congregation. The seminar was only an initial push in order that the communities, the provincial assemblies, the commissions of the different entities could follow up on the reflections. A great number of the aspects of our legacy merits to be taken up again and deepened. For example: Eucharistic Adoration, which places us before the anterior gratuity of the love of God and the service of reconciliation to which we dehonians are called. Our charism is rich and current. It pertains to each one of us to make it come alive by building an identity which we must constantly deepen and by giving testimony to a love which enriches the union to the Heart of Christ and which translates into faithful practice.

From Yogyakarta we send greeting to all with the wish that our Sint Unum may grow daily more strongly and that “with open heart and mind” we may live for the service of the advent of the Reign of God.yogya

Communications in the Congregation

The sector on communications in the Congregation has been quite busy in recent months. Communications was a major issue at the last General Chapter. In spring the General Administration set up a Communications Commission with Fr. Radek Warenda (vice general secretary) as its director. Besides Fr. Radek, members of the commission are Fr. Stefan Tertünte (Centro Studi Dehoniani), Mary Gorski (USA) and Fr. Antonio Rufete Cabrera (ESP). Andrè Lorenz of André Lorenz Medien (Germany) and Fr. Pedro Iglesias (secretary general) are also working with the commission.

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The commission’s work is based in the Mission Statement that was developed and approved by the General Council earlier this year. With that statement as a backdrop, the commission hopes to develop a communication strategy for the congregation. This includes creating a common identity for the congregation; in marketing terms this is often referred to as a “corporate image.” It is a set of visual cues, such logos and colors, along with words or phrases that quickly bring to mind the organization that they represent.

Whatever the ministry, whatever the community, it should easily be identified as “Dehonian.”

The commission has developed a website about the Mission Statement. Click here to access it. In the months ahead more initiatives from the commission will be shared with the congregation.

Youth day in Pliszczyn, Poland

From June 26 to July 1 about 500 young people gathered for the XXIVth Dehonian Day for Youth in Pliszczyn Poland. The young people did not only come from our parishes but also from other parishes in Poland. A very enthusiastic tradition has developed around these Dehonian youth days. The theme of this year was: Fired by the power of the Spirit.

The young people live in tents and take part in giving personal witness and in prayer. They are also given an opportunity to listen to all sorts of great discussions and presentations. But more important, perhaps, is the opportunity to form new friendships, to receive reconciliation, and to eat the famous soup.

It would be difficult to imagine to hold this festive gathering anywhere else. It has become a yearly event to which the ever generous inhabitants of Pliszczyn contribute greatly to make this event memorable for the youth. This year the groep Exodus gave a concert attended not only by the young people but also by the local people.  During the event the local bishop came to confirm the youth of Pliszczyn. A wonderful event!

Ordination of Bishop André Vital

On July 8,  André Vital Félix da Silva, scj, of Brazil was ordained Bishop for the diocese of Limoeiro do Norte by Bishop Virginio Bressanelli, our former Superior General. Bishop André was known in the Congregation for his theological work. He was a member of the Latin American Dehonian Theological Commission. His motto is

 

 

“Aspicientes in Jesum”.

 

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International news

  • Philippines  On June 2, it was the 18th anniversary of the Kasanag Foundation in the Philippines. This is a social project of the Philippine Region in Cagayan de Oro. On June 2 after the Eucharist presided over by Fr. Donald Longno scj. there was an art exhibit and a cultural presentation of the women who live there. It was followed by a meal.  The Kasanag Daughters receive protection and rehabilitation because many are victims of violence and sexual abuse. The Foundation was started by Fr. Eduardo Aguero scj. At this moment, there are 24 young women there between the ages of 7 and 16. In the 18 years of its existence the Foundation has assisted 190 women and girls.
  • Spain The Spanish Province has an initiative named “Church for decent work”. It is a communal gathering place for those who are convinced of the necessity for worthy work. You can follow their project on the internet at http://www.iglesiaporeltrabalhodecente.org. The group is planning a celebration for October 7, the world day for valued work.
  • Spain The Spanish Province also launched a site for the Dehonian Family. The Province is planning a national meeting of the Dehonian Family for February 25, 2018. The Spanish branch of the Dehonian Family is quite varied consisting of religious, lay people, youth, volunteers, benefactors, missionaries and many teachers. All seek to follow the Dehonian spirituality, convinced as they are of the value of the mission of Fr. Dehon.
  • India  On June 12 a new District Superior and council were installed in India. The new district superior is Fr. Macqueen Winston Savio and his councillors are Michael Augustin Moses, Matwe Lilan Vadassay, Jesus Manuel Baene Valbuena and Joseph Kasmir.
  • Poland  On June 14 the Polish Province was represented at the exhibit “SacroExpo”. This year is the 70 anniversary of the foundation of the congregation in Poland. THe province has made use of the exhibit as a showcase of the province’s activities. In this context there are exhibits on Profeto, the publishing house in Krakow, the project “Talent”, a group of national missionaries, and the Polish work with youth.
  • Latin America  In Buenos Aires the representatives of the Latin American “Justitita et Pax” group met on June 17. The meeting took as its theme one of the slogans of the last General Chapter: “Merciful in community with the poor”. It touched on some of the most pressing social issues in Latin America such as the ecology, the negative aspects of economic development policies and projects, abuse of water resources, migration, sex trade, prostitution, transsexual persons, work and unemployment. The Provincial Fr. Lampa opened the meeting. Bishop Virginio Bressanelli spoke on the theme of “The ecological, social and economic impact of mining; the problem of water and its effect on life in Pantagonia.” The theme came close to the heart of BIshop Bressanelli during his ministry in this area when he first became bishop.
  • EUF  On June 20 a new Provincial administration took office in Europe francophone. The Provincial for a third term will be Fr. Jean-Jacques Flamang and his councillors will be Fr. André Conrath, Joseph Claude Siebenaler, Stanislaw Wavro and Antonio Tejado Chamorro.

 

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Feast of the Sacred Heart 2017

It has become a tradition now that all the members of the Region gather in Ottawa for a two-day celebration of the Feast of the Sacred Heart. The Region has decided to hold the celebration a day early in order to allow the celebration of the Feast in the parishes. Only four members were absent from the celebration. On the occasion we took a group picture. 20170622_110407_resized

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Regional Council in Montréal

On Wednesday, May 24 the Regional Council met in Montréal. As planned, this was to be the meeting dealing with the financial situation of the Region. Although the Financial Report of 2016 was still at the accountant, the meeting of the Finance Committee the day before (May 23) gave the council a good insight into the financial situation of the Region. (See the report of the Finance Committee below). After the usual introductions to the meeting (prayer, and personal information) the council dealt with the following items:

  1. The overview of recent events: (1) the meeting of the local superiors of North America. The US province invited the Canadian counterparts to join them for a reflection on the role and mission of the local superior. This happened in Hales Corners on March 13 -14. Although only one of the Canadian superiors (Gustave Lulendo) participated, the level of the exchange was such that it was decided to call together the Canadian superiors for a similar event. (2) the meeting of NORAM: the meeting of the North American councils was held in Hales Corners on April 24. (See below). (3) reports on the meetings in Rome (secretaries, December 2016), Bursars (May 2017) and Dehonian Family (May 2017). (4) International contacts: The Regional Superior reported on his efforts to strengthen our numbers, especially in Toronto for the Parishes through his contacts with the major superiors of India, Indonesia and Cameroon. We hope that relief will come soon for the parish in Toronto.
  2. Feedback from the communities: (1) Montréal community: The community has expanded its health care beyond Walter van As to include also Rein van Leeuwen. Samuel, who has worked with Fr. Walter over the past few years, is now also helping Fr. Rein with bathing and other personal care. Fr. Rein is appreciating this help very much and seems to have gained new energy. The health situation of Frère Luc seems stable at the moment. He has received a regular series of chemo treatments and has responded positively. He has also been helping Walter when he needs to get around in the house. The community house in Montréal will need to have the roof repaired. Also approved together with the roof renewal was the addition of air conditioning on the top floor. (2) Toronto community: The community feels somewhat stressed because of a lack of adequate personnel for the two parishes. Efforts were made to have an additional person  come to Toronto but thus far without success. An additional Portuguese or Spanish speaking priest would be highly welcome. The community was very happy with the response of the parishioners and UKI members to the offer of an introduction to the spirituality of the congregation. Around 75 members participated and 27 indicated that they were interested in participating in a program to become Dehonian Associates. There was also a brief discussion on how the Toronto community could help in the welcoming of the retreatants from the United States for the August retreat at Queen of the Apostles Retreat house in Mississauga (August 13 – 19).  (3) Ottawa Community: Paul Tennyson reported on the continuing success of the Wednesday evening community meetings. The community meets every week at 4:30 on a variety of issues. Once a month it meets for adoration during this time. The meeting ends with supper. The house also welcomes the renewal of its roof. It is hoped that the travails of the leaks in the rooms on the third floor, may finally be over.
  3. Sexual Abuse document: At the meeting of the major superiors in Rome in December 2016 all the entities were asked to adapt and implement a sexual abuse policy. Our policy has been on the books for more than 20 years. Jim Casper undertook the task of comparing our document with the document from Rome and to arrive at a new document. He presented his work at the meeting and with a few adaptations it was accepted. The new document will be presented to the Region at our Fall Assembly.
  4. For a number of years, the Conseil d’Administration at Séminaire du Sacré-Coeur have been paying a set sum of money to the Region to take on full ownership of the school from the Congregation. The Congregation is still a full member of the Conseil d’Administration and the new Policy Document gives the Congregation through one of its members or a designated alternative a continued seat. Our Council in consultation with Richard Woodbury and a small committee of the school has been looking into the establishment of a pastoral agent at the school. It was felt that the annual payment of the school to the Region might be most usefully used to pay for a post of spiritual or pastoral animator. Council was presented a first draft of a job description of the animator. The draft document still needs to be updated and presented at a future council meeting for approval. At the May 31 meeting of the Conseil d’Administration the motion to accept such a position at the school was accepted in principle.  Over the summer it is hoped that this position will be implemented in the school.
  5. Feast of the Sacred Heart: It has become a tradition that the Region celebrates the Feast of the Sacred Heart together at Dehon House in Ottawa. This will happen again this year. However, in order to make the celebration of the feast also a parish event, the Region decided last year to begin a day early. It means that the Region assembles on Wednesday June 21 for our traditional Holy Hour and celebrates the liturgy of the Feast on Thursday June 22. The Ottawa community will take care of the planning.
  6. Regional Assembly: Since the Region will participate in a retreat during our usual time for our annual assembly, Council decided to hold an assembly at Providence House in Kingston starting on October 2 and finishing on October 4 at noon. The items we wish to discuss at the assembly are (1) the 2016 financial statement (possibly with the results of the financial overview of Marcil Lavallée), (2) a meeting with the Migration Committee, (3) the sexual abuse document, (4) updating of the power of attorney and testaments, (5) the celebration of the anniversaries of Maurice Légaré (40 years of vows), Peter Sanders and Roger Phaneuf (50 years of ordination),

 

 

 

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The Regional Finance Committee meets

The Regional Finance Committee met in Montréal on May 23, a day before the Regional Council. There were five items on the agenda.

  1. Mission Office. The committee met first of all with Nicole Béland, who took over the Procure from Fr. Bédard last year. She provided the committee with an overview of the operations and the financial report of the Mission Office. The Procure operatesIMG_2228 independently from the community at 2830 blvd. Gouin and presents its own financial statement to the Finance Committee. Currently the Procure runs four campaigns each year: the Feast of the Sacred Heart, the remembrance of the deceased in November, the calendar (pre-Christmas), and a Lenten campaign in February March. Only the remembrance campaign in November includes the English-speaking population.
  2. Review of the 2016 Financial Reports. Although the 2016 financial report is not yet complete, Maurice Légaré walked the committee members through the receipts and expenditures of the three communities.
  3. Donations of the Region: At the council meeting of December 14, 2016 it was decided that 20% of the cash balance of the year will be set aside for donations to be determined by the Regional Superior and his council. Since the cash balance of 2016 is $ 153,329.23, the Finance Committee recommended to the Council to make $ 30,665.80 available to the Congregation for donations.
  4. Marcil Lavallée: The Region had agreed at the last Assembly that we would hold a financial review of the Region’s finances. Maurice has contacted an agent at Marcil Lavallée in Vanier who will undertake this review as soon as the accountant has completed the 2016 Financial Report. The review will be based on the reports of 2015 and 2016. The review should be ready for the assembly of the Region in October.
  5. The sale of the chalet in Pointe-au-Chêne: In September of last year, the Region put up for sale the chalet at 15 Carrières in Pointe-au-Chêne. In April of this year a buyer emerged and it was sold for approximately $ 140,000. The balance of the funds will be added to our investments.
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