ASIA / BANGLADESH – New vocations among the Brothers of the Holy Cross


ASIA / BANGLADESH – New vocations among the Brothers of the Holy Cross

Dhaka (Agenzia Fides) – “When I entered the formation house to be religious, I felt that I had arrived at the right place at the right time. Here, I can be a witness of Jesus Christ as a brother by putting my talents to the In this consecrated life, I discover full happiness “, said Brother Immanuel Raphael Gomes, who entered the Congregation of the Brothers of the Holy Cross ( CSC) in Sagardi, near Barisal. With him, 14 other young people took their first vows. Among them, six are religious brothers and nine intend to continue studies towards the priesthood. Brother Immanuel Raphael, 22 years old, shares with Agenzia Fides the testimony of his discovery of a vocation: “My father was a cook in the house of the Brothers of the Holy Cross. I studied in their school. Their holy life, their way of life teaching m ‘attracted a lot. My parents and brothers and sisters also encouraged me. This is how I will spend the rest of my life: serving to preach the Good News of God. ”
Brother Emmanuel is from the parish of Diang, of the Archdiocese of Chattogram, and is the first religious of his parish. The parish has two nuns and currently does not have a resident priest. The Congregation in Bangladesh operates two drug rehabilitation centers, and Immanuel is eager to serve in one of the centers that help young people stop using drugs.
Among the 15, Brother Abraham Dopho, a Garo tribal from the parish of Pirgacha in the diocese of Mymensingh, tells Agenzia Fides that he was attracted to religious life by observing the lives of other Brothers of the Holy Cross. . “When I was a student, I met Brothers of the Holy Cross. I noticed their pastoral work, their good and kind work, the holy lifestyle, the teaching style that attracted me. Today hui, as a brother, I can work for Jesus Christ “. He says he wants to work for the needy, according to their mission: “We are called to be educators of the faith and to bear witness to the option for the poor. Jesus Christ taught and preached. I will listen to the needy and try to show them the compassion of Christ. Jesus will use my talents for his work. I am totally dependent on Jesus Christ in my life, “said younger brother Abraham Dopho, 21, who will work as a teacher in the future in the future. His parents once forbade him to enter life. religious.
“My father didn’t know much about the Brothers, but when he met them he encouraged me and now he’s proud of me”.
The Director of Formation of the Brothers of the Holy Cross in the country, Brother Tapon Lawrence Serao, told Agenzia Fides that the congregation has a flowering of vocations to religious life in Bangladesh. “We have 66 aspirants in different formation houses. Each year we welcome five religious brothers on average. Commissions. With our Christian lifestyle and values, we preach and witness the message of God in this 90% Muslim country, ”he says.
The Congregation is rooted in Bangladesh: 119 Brothers of the Holy Cross are involved in eight dioceses, and Brothers from Bangladesh have been sent to Canada as missionaries. The religious manage two rehabilitation and treatment centers for drug addicts, 28 between schools and colleges.
The religious institute, which has also founded a Catholic university, intends to found sections of university faculties in remote areas, or so that needy young people can easily follow their teachings. Brother Tapon Lawrence Serao explains, “We have extended our ministry of education to remote areas. We deal with educational institutions attended by 27,350 students. In our boarding school, there are 485 students ”.
The Notre Dame de Dhaka College, established in 1949, is the main college and upper secondary education institution in the country. The excellence of the education of the college prompted the government and the Church in Bangladesh to submit a request to the Congregation to establish a university and so the University of Notre Dame held its first conferences on December 7, 2014. The Brothers are known for the quality of educational establishments and many professionals, public figures, parliamentarians are alumni of their schools.
In 1851, it was the Congregation of “Propaganda Fide” which asked Blessed Basile Moreau, French priest, founder of the Congregation of the Holy Cross, if the congregation could assume responsibility for the mission of the Church in East Bengal. . Moreau accepts. Since then, the Brothers have a long history of pastoral service, defending the dignity and rights of the poor. In Bangladesh, the Servant of God, Brother Flavian Laplante CSC, embodies the commitment of the congregation. (FC-PA) Agenzia Fides, 10/29/2021)

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