Monday, August 31, 2009

Sn(eh)ake Jyoti _Sevasi Baroda.

Sn(eh)ake Jyoti
The surrounding of Sneh Jyoti is blessed with greenery in abundance. Full-grown Chickoo trees, a variety of plants, flower plants, banana trees and vegetable garden adds beauty to Sneh Jyoti. Thanks to the eco-friendly people who are the cause of this environment. Along with a few visitors, animals too envy the gorgeous premise of Sneh Jyoti. Foxes, stray dogs, wild cats, hares, birds and a variety of snakes are frequent trespassers. The inmates tolerate any creature except the cobras. Under somewhat trying circumstances our Sch Sunil Macwan faced a cobra last week with considerable presence of mind. The snake in question, totally unaware of the altruistic intentions and ecological concerns of Sunil, did not take too kindly to his attempt to relocate it in a better environment and made known its displeasure in no uncertain terms by a nasty bite. Sunil took the bite in a true spirit of indifference and sent the offending party to his eternal reward. Sunil was rushed to the hospital where he was kept under constant observation for 24 hours in the ICU. He is back with us and has made it clear that his love for snakes remains undiminished in spite of this minor set-back. (Sebastian V& Harry Martis).

Monday, August 17, 2009

The celebration of the feast of St.Ignatius in the Pre-novitiate.

Each and every person is a supreme gift of God. All are gifted with unique talents. Some are good in singing and others are good in playing. Some have the ability to speak very well while some others are good in drawing, dancing, music etc.. Similarly St.Ignatius too had a special gift from God – the gift of finding God in all things and persons.
Preparation for the Feast.
Prior to the feast, we had novena prayers to St.Ignatius. By the grace of novena prayers, I regained my confidence in my vocation. Besides saying the novena prayers I used to pray at night before going to sleep. I prayed for my good health and thanked the Lord for my vocation to the pre-novitiate.
The feast day mass was celebrated by Fr.Cedric Prakash. He gave us a good sermon. In the sermon he talked about the life of St.Ignatius. The mass was very meaningful to us. All sang very well. Finally we sang the Ignatian march at the end of the mass and we greeted each other.
We sang hymns in different languages, Gujarati, Tamil, Malayalam, Marathi, Hindi and in English. It was a great joy to sing in different languages. We sang those hymns wonderfully. Moreover we prayed in our own mother tongues and that made us to feel at home.
Skit and Quiz.
We were all divided into three groups. Each group had six members in it. Everyone participated in the skit as well as in the quiz. The quiz was on the life of St.Ignatius and on the life of the missionaries in Gujarat. Through this event I gained much knowledge about the life of St.Ignatius and about the life of the missionaries in Gujarat.
The new learning.
I have been celebrating the feast of St.Ignatius of Loyola since 1996. But this time I learned more about the life of St.Ignatius and his spirituality. He was not only a leader and guide some 500 years ago, but he is a leader and guide for me today. He converted St.Francis Xavier by uttering the words of Jesus “What does it profit a man if he gains the whole world and looses his soul”. It made an impact on the life of St.Francis Xavier. These words of Jesus are resounding in my ears even today. They are challenging me to deeper conversion of heart. Over all it was a memorable feast.

Pawer Jagdishkumar G
Second Year pre-novice.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

The feast of St.Ignatius -Brijesh Parmar

Each and every Jesuit celebrates the feast of St. Ignatius on the 31 st of July. We pre novices also celebrated the feast of St.Ignatius on the31st July. We had many games on this feast. We prepared skits, and some others made posters. We were divided into three groups. It was a great experience for me to do works in groups.

We had a novena to St.Ignatius and it was conducted well. I liked the novena. Everyday we prayed to the Lord through St. Ignatius. During the novena we had readings form the life of St. Ignatius. We reflected over those reading and it was a great experience for me.

On the31st of July we had mass in the morning.Fr.Cedric Prakash gave us a good sermon. During the mass he explained to us about the four noble qualities of St.Ignatiu by the use of an acronym ‘FIRE’. F stands for fidelity, I stands for intellect, R stands for renewal and E stands for energy. These four qualities were explained to us very well.

We have good painters in our pre novitiate. They drew good pictures on the life of St. Ignatius of Loyola. They were all encouraged by our director.

The pre novices are from seven different states. We learnt songs in seven different languages. In the beginning we felt a little awkward to pronounce but later on we managed to learn and we sang beautifully. It was a marvelous experience.

We the second years took classes on the life of St. Ignatius and on the Society of Jesus in Gujarat to our new comers .This helped us to know more deeply about the life of St.Ignatius and the Society of Jesus in Gujarat.

St.Ignatius might have lost the battle at Pamplona but he never lost courage and he won a great victory for God by becoming a true soldier of God. Through the team work I also learnt many things from one another for my daily life. Unity can be built only by the teamwork. More over the team work helped us to accept each other. In short the feast day of St.Ignatius on the 31st July was a memorable one for me.
By. Brijesh Basilbhai Parmar.
2nd year pre- novice.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

A.M.D.G - All for the greater glory of God

Joy is a gift from God .Often we are not aware of the gift which the great Lord is sharing with us .I asked for strength, but the Lord gave me difficulties to make me strong. I asked for wisdom, but the Lord gave me problems to solve. I asked for prosperity, but the Lord gave me intellect to bring about prosperity. I asked for courage, but the Lord gave me dangers to over come. I asked for love, but the Lord gave me troubled people live with. I asked for favors, but the Lord gave me opportunities. I received nothing which I asked for yet I gained everything I needed.

If we compare these words with Ignatius’ life, he might have prayed or desired to be a great man that he wanted to become such as a general of an army and so on. Did he get the life which he really wanted? No. God wanted him to be a great general in his kingdom, by placing Ignatius as his servant and companion of Jesus. He then helped Francis Xavier to become a missionary of the East by uttering these words “What does it profit a man if he gains the whole world but loosen his very soul.” He realized the worthlessness of this world and worked for Christ who gave the everlasting wealth of joy and love. Ignatius was a fire that kindled the other fires. As a soldier he encouraged others even in difficult times and he continued doing so by being a soldier of Christ and finally he founded the Society of Jesus .The motto of the Society of Jesus is, “A. M. D .G”- “All for the grater glory of God”.

As I have come to know the life of Ignatius, I ask myself a question, could I also aspire to imitate the virtues which he had? The grace that I have experienced during these days of novena to saint Ignatius, has left an indelible mark in my life. The feast of St.Ignatius helped me to experience a sense of belonging to the Society of Jesus and it has gently challenged my relationship to Jesus.

Am I growing in my relationship with the Lord? Do my attitudes & behaviors help me to be a servant of God? Ignatius could find his relationship with God not only in specific times reserved for formal prayers but also every other minutes of the day. His mind and heart was so full of the love of God which helped him to be a good servant of God. So I hope and pray that I too may grow in virtues and become a fire that kindles the other fires.

Jose Francis Varickamakkil

The celebration of the feast of St.Ignatius in the Pre-Novitiate.

The feast of St. Ignatius.
There are so many saints in our catholic church whom we honor. Among them, there is only one who is known as a soldier to fight for God. He is known as St .Ignatius of Loyola. He is not only a model for us to imitate but he is also a help to discern and understand our own personal vocation. I want to share my experience with you about the way I went about preparing myself to celebrate the feast of St. Ignatius in the pre-novitiate.

The preparation for the feast
There were many activities organized for the feast of St. Ignatius; skit, quiz, games, hymns in different languages and team work. We were all told about St. Ignatius’ life and also about the Society of Jesus. This helped us to know and understand the Jesuits more. I was amazed to know about his spirituality. Besides this we had an hour long classes for four days to know more about the life of St. Ignatius.

Group work
We were divided into three groups. Each group was told to put up a skit on St. Ignatius’s life. There was fun and happiness to act and to perform in a group. Every one had a role to play. It was very interesting to see the variety of presentations. We had invited some of our fathers, sisters, and friends. Every one was delighted to see the performance on the stage. We used a whip, a cannon ball, a crucifix, a small statue of Mother Mary and a paper-sword as props to enhance our presentation.

Individual work and Games.
We had prepared special prayers for the novena days. This made us to deepen our faith very deeply. We played all kinds of games, such as Basket ball, Table tennis, Ohno, Carrom, Chess and cards. We enjoyed a lot while playing. The finals were held on the feast day. We won many prizes.

Prayer and Mass.
Some of the thoughts of St. Ignatius lead us to pray and reflect very deeply. Every one offered their special prayers and intentions on the feast day mass. It was nice to pray in different languages. The feast day mass was offered by Fr. Cedric. He gave us four important messages. Those were fidelity, intellectual life, renewal, and energy. The chapel was filled with our companions and well wishers.

Each group had a chance to paint a picture of St. Ignatius. Then they were all displayed on the notice board. Later on those pictures were displayed in the Loyola Church on Sunday. The pictures looked alive and real. Everyone was thrilled to see their own presentation.

Presentations to the First Years.
I had a chance to explain about St. Ignatius’ life to my first year companions. This presentation helped me to come to know more about St. Ignatius and the Jesuits working across the globe.

Hymns in different languages
Pre-Novices are from seven states and we decided to sing in seven different languages as a sign of unity in diversity. Everything was done well and it was well- organized. Everyone was interested in working, acting, singing, helping and sharing with each other. Each team gave their best in their undertakings. On account of this the feast of St. Ignatius was well-celebrated.

During the feast days I also renewed God’ call within me. Ignatian insights helped me to understand God’ call. Through the novena prayers God worked in me too. The feast of St. Ignatius was an unforgettable experience for me and for my companions. Now we can understand how Ignatius and his companions, though they were from different countries yet bonded together as a single community to work for the Lord and for his people.

Lawrence Irudaya raj A
Pre- novitiate.