Years of growing in the love of the Eucharistic Lord and a deep desire to be a minister of God’s love, steered Bro. Sabaratnam Santana, sss to make his Perpetual Profession of Religious Vows on the 11th of October, 2023, at St. Thomas’ Parish Church, Matale - Sri Lanka, which is administered by the Blessed Sacrament Religious. Blended with meaningful indigenous rituals, the bilingual concelebrated Holy Mass was officiated by Very Rev. Fr. Justin Chawkan, sss, the Provincial Superior of the Province of Christ the Bread of life. The family and friends of Brother Santana along with the Blessed Sacrament religious representing almost all the SSS communities in the Island nation, priests and nuns from five different religious Congregations and parishioners were present to witness and to celebrate the joy of his Perpetual Profession.
Brother Santana hails from a predominantly Catholic hamlet called Ilavalai in the Northern part of Sri Lanka. Due to the civil war the family had to move to the Vanni mainland where he acquired his childhood and primary education. When the country returned to normalcy in 2009, the family of Brother Santana resettled at their home town, where he continued his education at St. Henry’s College, Illavalai. Having completed his secondary and tertiary education, he joined the Sacramentinos in Colombo on the 9th of January, 2012. After the novitiate formation and several years of his academic, spiritual, human and pastoral formation, he followed a three-month P4 Programme (Programme of Preparation for Perpetual Profession) in the Philippines and Sri Lanka.
Blessed Sacrament religious from different nations, ethnicities, linguistic groups and societies who live in religious communities, are a particularly powerful expression of unity in diversity and boundless love of the Eucharist. Through Perpetual Commitment Bro. Santana is called to live in religious communities and he too positively responded and is always willing to serve the Lord in the Church. The Sri Lankan Province is joyful to see that his family and friends are participating in the celebration as they will bear witness to this commitment and will be his companions in his life and mission in the Congregation. It’s vital because we live the vows with the community in collaboration and solidarity with our diverse world.
The Congregation of the Blessed Sacrament supports, inspires and encourages every religious, and it also celebrates the commitment of its religious. We, the SSS are expected to live our vows with the Church, and make our commitment to be good companions in our Eucharistic ministry. The commitment to the SSS way of life that we make is solemn, formal and public; thus, each member of the Eymardian family is responsible for his vows. In this community centered life, we are called to live among brothers with brotherly affection and oneness of heart which need to be constantly nourished as community life gives joy only if there is communion among the members. In religious life we do experience the presence of the risen Lord in fraternal communion. Fraternal communion comes by means of mutual love in the communities and commitment in our ministry of the Church
Consequently, to live the mystery of the Eucharist fully and to make known its meaning Brother Santana will be ordained a deacon on the 19th of October, 2023.
Father Asirvadam Manuel, sss
Province Christ Bread of Life