Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Fr. Chelston(Charlie) Dias passed away on 27 Jan 2015

We are sorry to inform you about the passing away of Fr. Chelston(Charlie Dias) (68/50) at 10.45p.m on 27 January 2015 at Gomtipur, Nursing Home in Ahmedabad. The funeral will be held on 29 January 2015 at 3.00p.m in  Loyola Hall, Ahmedabad.

Fr.Charlie Dias was admitted in the Sterling Hospital in the second week of November 2014 for the treatment of cancer in his right arm. The doctors were trying their level best to save his right arm. After a prolonged treatment at Sterling, on 16 January 2015 the doctors then in consultation with the superiors concerned decided to go for the amputation of the arm in order to save his life.

Fr.Charlie Dias accepted the decision of the doctors and  then he had sent his personal message to his near and dear ones:

“It is hard to believe i have finally after more than a month i have now been recommended to take the harsh step of consent of amputation of my Right hand, this is in consultation with the team of my Superiors, Socius and my family members having met with the Panel of doctors including Dr Somesh and Dr Mandeep to save my life. They did all the best to save my hand but at the end i lost the battle and had to surrender my right arm.” 

The right arm was amputated on 16 January 2015. For a week he was in the ICU and then he was transferred to a private room. He showed a lot of improvement. With the support of Bro.Pravin Falcao, he even tired to walk  in the room. Once again on 25 January, he had to be put in the ICU since his vital organs were not cooperating to the treatment that was given to him. Moreover he had to undergo dialysis. After the dialysis he had to be put in ventilators.

Finally his prolonged suffering came to an end on 27 January 2015  at 10.45 p.m and he departed for the eternal home. May his soul rest in peace!


Dias Chelston

Fr.Chelston was the ninth child in a family of twelve. He joined the Apostolic School at Loyola Hall and passed SSC from Loyola in 1964. Influenced by the Jesuit Community at Loyola, he joined the novitiate the same year and took his vows in 1966. As a student of St.Xavier’s College, Ahmedabad, he presented the college in football, hockey and athletics. Though chosen to represent the Gujarat University in these various disciplines, he had to step out ‘in virtue of holy obedience’. In 1968, Fr.Charlie Dias was the fastest runner in Gujarat University standing first in the 100 m. race.

After an illustrious college performance, both in and off the field, he proceeded for the novitiate at Mt Abu and then for philosophy to Pune. After completing his regency and theology, he was ordained a priest in Bandra in 1979. After his B.Ed. Charlie had four assignment at Rosary, Baroda in 1984, landed at Loyola hall as Vice Principal, with additional charge of sports and scouts.

Charlie has a motto that reads: A true Xavierite is a better person for others. His great hobby is arranging leadership camps and ‘future leaders’ vie with each other to find a place on these camps. The leadership camps surely went beyond the ordinary and the mundane routine of the textbook learning and spewing what was learnt in examinations. These camps have been, a unique contribution of fr.Charlie to engage young people in understanding themselves, discovering their inner potential, sensitizing them to society’s challenges and egging them on to leadership. His faith formation camps for Catholics students have him personally involved and devoted every bit of his time and energy. As a Vocation promoter, he organized many camps and through these camps many have joined for priesthood and for religious life.

All through the years at St.Xavier’s Loyola Hall, Fr.Charlie has held many offices and important ones such as Principal of St.Xavier’s Loyola Hall Primary Section, Director of Leadership Training programmes, Director of Sports and games, Director of alter servers, Chairman of Cubs and scouts, Director of the Social service league and Minister of the Jesuit residence. Holding all these portfolios, Fr.Charlie’s main focus has been the children.  He instilled in his students the spirit of sportsmanship. ‘Play the game to enjoy it. Winning and losing don’t matter. Participation is the most important thing’.
Fr.Charlie’s generosity knows no bounds reaching out to the poor and the needy far and wide. He is very often addressed as Fr.Santaclaus.

Fr.Lancy D’Cruz

Monday, January 5, 2015


My dear friends in the Lord,

Merry Christmas to one and all! This Christmas, I'm drawn to Phil. 2:5-11 (Kirtansagar, 155): "He was in the form of God; yet He laid no claim to equality with God, but made Himself nothing, assuming the form of a slave ... " (vs. 6). Christmas is the time for each one of us individually, and all of us together as a Province, to reflect if we are imitators of Christ in this aspect of utter self-giving.
We need to reflect whether our social functions, no doubt a part of social living, are theologically sound or not. We need to reflect whether our social functions give the right message, message that we are celebrating sacraments where we encounter Jesus, where we give ourselves to Jesus, where we proclaim to know Him more clearly, love Him more dearly and follow Him more nearly.
Often our social functions, held on the occasions of various sacraments become more central than the religious ceremonies. The religious ceremony may proclaim service, like that of Jesus, but our social celebrations proclaim something else.
This does not mean there have to be no social functions. But it does mean that they should not give a counter-message, counter-testimony. I'm sure each one will want to reflect on our calling, from this perspective.
I've had a very fruitful visit of Spain. I've visited fellow Jesuits who worked in Gujarat and a few of our benefactors and Convents of Sisters who work in Gujarat. I'm impressed by the palpable love of Gujarat expressed by every one of them. I hope I have succeeded in expressing our gratitude to all of them for being part of our life and ministry in the vineyard of the Lord in Gujarat.
From 1 to 13 December, we had the Colloquium for the newly appointed Provincials. It's almost a year since I was appointed the Provincial Superior of Gujarat Jesuit Province. I have experienced both consolations and desolations in this first year. The experience of this colloquium with other English-speaking, newly appointed Provincial Superiors from across the globe has been extremely enriching. I've written extensively about my trip to Spain and Rome and so do not go into details here.
On 11th I thanked God in a very special way for the first Baptisms in Gujarat. On that day, in 1893, Eighteen neophytes were Baptised in Mogri. 
On Sat 20th, St. Xavier's School, Vijaynagar celebrated its silver jubilee. May this ministry of education lead to wholesome progress of those who are left behind by the unfortunate social order.
On 27th, Deacon Mahesh Bagul, becomes the first Dangi to be called to Priestly service and Deacon Nilesh Macwan will be ordained on 17 Jan 2015 at Bharuch. May the Lord use this occasion to inspire many more youth to dedicate themselves to the service of the Lord.
Once again, I wish you all a deep, personal, real experience of Jesus who became one of us so that we may become one with Him. May we all learn from our lights and shadows of 2014 and have a better 2015. Happy New Year!

A. M. D. G.