“Behold, how good and pleasant it is when brothers live in unity!” (Ps133.1).
“Gathered in the name of the Lord, we are called to live in the Church as brothers” (ROL 1).
If our Holy Founder Peter Julian Eymard were to witness Youngling Mingling 2019 held in Goa, India, he would say, “I am glad to see my brothers on fire”. By the way, “Youngling Mingling” is the title given to the gathering of all 70 Formees who are in the formation right from Initial stage to Scholasticate, organized by Kristu Jyoti Province, India, led by Fr. Peter Jayakanthan sss, Provincial Superior, and assisted by Fr. Peter Fernandez sss, Vicar Provincial, and Novice Master, from 27th evening to 30th December 2019.
This Youngling Mingling draws its purpose from our Rule of life No.5, “Open to the summons of the Spirit and attentive to the needs of the human family, our communities become places of prayer, reconciliation and festive celebration, sign and leaven of the unity which the world seeks”.
A place of Prayer
All the formators not only accompanied the brothers but also gave them ample opportunities to taste and see SSS way of celebrating the Eucharist, Prayer before the Blessed Sacrament and the Divine Office. Everyone was able to cherish the SSS Vocation and be grateful to the Lord Almighty. It was a kind of “Rome Retreat” for all the participants. The atmosphere was truly Eucharistic and Eymardian. There was sense of joy and pride about the legacy of our Holy Founder who, challenged by the religious ignorance and indifference of his time, searched for an answer and found it in the love of God manifested in the Eucharist. The session animated by both Fr. Provincial and Vicar Provincial reiterated our Eucharistic charism. There were extraordinary desire and zeal among the candidates while both the fathers delving into our Eucharistic patrimony. There was a session on extra-curricular activities too.
A place of Unity/Reconciliation
India is known for unity in diversity, so also our Youngling Mingling. The present scenario poses various challenges to all. Division seems to be the hallmark of society. In this context, our gathering in the Lord has taken the initiative to be united in spite of one’s ethnicity, language and so on. It was amazing to see the beauty of unity in the gathering and richness of one’s culture in the cultural program and in the liturgical hymns. All were of one heart and one mind!
A place of Festive Celebration
28th December 2019 was the day that the Lord had made, we all rejoiced and were glad for we invited our benefactors and well-wishers and honoured them. Among them, there were a number of SSS Associates. There was a celebration of the Eucharist followed by cultural evening. It was the occasion for all to know our Congregation a little deeper especially of our Eucharistic charism and our SSS mission. All who were invited were happy about the number of brothers- the harvest is rich indeed! They left with a sense of hope and joy. Of course, Youngling Mingling-2019 had lots of sportive events animated by the formators themselves.
Fr. Provincial thanked and honoured all formators, and in a special way, he thanked and acknowledged the vital role played by the Provincial treasurer, the Superior of Bambolim retreat Community along with the Assistant Novice Master and Treasurer in Novitiate community for their selfless service. Fr. Vicar Provincial also acknowledged the moral support of all the fathers in the Province and thanked the fathers in the formation communities. He carried out the evaluation of the Youngling and Mingling 2019.
At last, it came to an end with sumptuous lunch. It was a kind of Tabor Experience for many because several whispered Mt 17:4 “Lord it is good for us to be here”. However, prompted by the sense of mission as it is in our Rule of Life No.3, and energised by riches of God’s love as to respond to the hungers of the human family, all set out their respective formation house to be the disciple and apostle of Eucharistic Jesus.
Father Christopher Ephrem, sss