Day 3 – FCAO Meeting – Updates By Br. Praveen Henry D’ Souza, the Minister Provincial

We began our day little late. We had mass at 7 am followed by breakfast. Friar Gonza (he actually has a very long name and this is one of the names, simplest) the Custos of West Papua and also the president of SAAOC celebrated the Mass. Through the story of "one among you is a Messiah" he brought out the need to respect, to care-share-cure in our communities.

Our session began at 8.30. Today we met in each of our conferences i.e. SAAOC and EAC. In our conference we elected a new President in the place of friar Gonza. The new President is the Custos from Pakistan friar Yusuf. The Vice President is friar Philip from Australia who also continues to be the Bursar for the conference. The secretary is normally from the entity of the president and so naturally from Pakistan. We also had to elect three secretaries:

Formation and Studies: friar Hieronymus from Indonesia;
Mission and Evangelization: friar Johnson from India who is re- elected;
JPIC: friar McKay from Australia.

The EAC didn't have the election.

When we gathered together for a combined meeting, we made ready the draft of all the discussion we had. There were statements, resolutions and recommendations. One of the important aspects of all this is the Ongoing Formation. These will be shared later.

Today we made a visit to the ECO-PASTORAL centre cared by the friars. This was very special for us. This is a centre for organic farming and from here so many families are taught. The poor are kept in mind for self sustenance. I share some inspiration from brother MIDI the organic farmer here. He says that the insects are not enemies. They tell us what's wrong with plants. A plant has a natural resistance system it forms a thin layer on the leaf. So when insects come and attack it means that we have to change the constituents of the water or compost. When insects know that plant is resistant they leave. So the duty is also to program the mind of farmers and people.

This is very much a pastoral ministry as the friars work with the indigenous people who have so much wisdom to offer to the world especially for protecting the Creation. Seeds are naturally cultivated and used. One who controls seeds controls the lives of the people. Brother Midi says that according to the Tradition: earth is mother and those who destroy tress are males. Mother protects and men destroy. Local wisdom helps them to care for the creation and cultivate the land.

If the needs of the creation are not going to be taken care then we are awaiting destruction. The way we cultivate and relate with the plants changes our thinking. Organic cultivation is growing of organisms. What we plant is part of our lives. What we plant what turns out to be part of our life.

The centre works in tandem with the research centre locally. This knowledge needs to be translated to the poor. The alumni of this centre help in running the centre.

The spirituality is all about knowing that God doesn't simply give you a banana to eat and the skin to throw away but rather even use the skin. Unless we give up this throw away culture we cannot understand. It's all about saving the refuse.

St. Francis of Assisi

FRAIRS B'DAYS (November)

Charles Mathew Kolanchery
1 / November / 1947

Deepak Kumar
1 / November / 1994

Joseph Raj M.
2 / November / 1975

Charles Bernard
4 / November / 1963

Lawrence Simon
5 / November / 1949

Bala Marneni
5 / November / 1962

Singaraya A.
6 / November / 1970

Salvador D' Souza
6 / November / 1979

Clinton J.
6 / November / 1992

Hemant Xess
7 / November / 1975

Saji P. Mathew
9 / November / 1975

Augustine Pinto
10 / November / 1936

Fulgence Ekka
11 / November / 1964

Basil S. Lobo.
11 / November / 1971

Salvador Drego
14 / November / 1984

Kalyan Kumar
14 / November / 1994

Vinoth Kumar T.
17 / November / 1993

Thomas Joseph
19 / November / 1962

Irudayaraj Fernando
20 / November / 1966

Silash Panna
21 / November / 1990

Rajesh Praveen Kumar
24 / November / 1994

Gregory Fernandes
25 / November / 1930

Carlos Dias
25 / November / 1956

Tojy M.
25 / November / 1970

Belthazar Pinto
26 / November / 1960

Johnson M. V.
27 / November / 1970

Prasad Papabathuni
30 / November / 1970