New Wine in New Wineskins

Chennai – How wonderful it is to rejuvenate oneself with the energy that is passed on by our Holy Mother Church! In accordance with the formative program of Don Guanella Major Seminary, the Second Annual Don Mimi Theological forum was held on November 29th under the leadership of Bro. Raja Rathinam. The topic “New Wine in New Wineskins,” was inspired by a famous Church document given by Pope Francis to the Congregation of Consecrated Life. There were different speakers to present the topics of the document from different perspectives. Fr. Periyanayagam, Vice Rector, was the chief guest of the day; helping the forum by clarifying the doubts raised by the brothers. Fr. Samson, Rector, was also present and helped the forum with his insights to be a better person during formation. The forum also included evaluations and some entertainment in the form of party games. Overall it was a worthwhile forum in which brothers explored their knowledge of the Church. The forum ended with an expression of thanks proposed by Bro. Praveen.

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Pray for the Deceased

Chennai – While we program a busy schedule each month, the month of November does not exempt us from visiting the cemetery to pay homage and express our love towards our beloved ones who have gone before us to heaven from our family. We also need to know that there are plenary indulgences given by the Church in visiting the graveyard on particular days to pray for the departed souls. On November 2nd, All Souls’ Day, all the brothers of the DGMS Community went to attend Holy Mass held at the local parish cemetery, it was a great chance to visit and to pray for the departed souls of their families. Also at the request of a nearby parish, the brothers went for a day to bless and pray for the dead. It was all a blissful moment to gather as one family and pray for our loved ones in heaven.

Feast of a Saint

Chennai – Don Guanella Major Seminary was glad to celebrate the feast of St. Louis Guanella on October 24th. In view of the solemn feast, the flag was hoisted by the Provincial Superior on October 15th and the novena began. Each day was organized with different themes and by a different resource person of the community. Different groups animated the nine days, including the Guanellian Lay Movement, Guanellian Youth Movement, Don Guanella Special School, Don Guanella Evening School and Don Guanella Major Seminary under the direction of the community fathers. On the final day there was a solemn celebration which included the religious from neighboring communities, GLM, GYM, Beneficiaries and other well wishers of our mission. The Mass was celebrated by Fr. Provincial. After Mass a festive meal was shared with all the guests.

Vocations on Vacation

Chennai – As the part of the program of theological formation, Don Guanella Major Seminary Brothers went on a four day vocation promotion to different parts of Tamilnadu and Andhra Pradesh during their semester holidays. It is the practice of the Major seminary to send brothers to encourage young boys who show an interest to become future priests. This year five groups were organized to go, to invite and encourage the youngsters to serve the Lord through the Servants of Charity congregation. Brothers were organized in a systematic way to approach different parishes, schools and boarding schools to collect the names of the interested. After four days, the brothers returned to the seminary for their academic program. Thanks to the vocation promoter of the province and the good hearts of the seminarians who helped in this endeavor.

Freedom Celebrated

Chennai – The 72nd Independence Day was celebrated at DGES and gladdened the hearts of the children on August 15th. Fr. J. Samson, the Superior and Rector of Don Guanella Major Seminary, was the guest of honor who inspired the children during his address to take pride in the wealth of the nation along with the traditional respect for their elders, to become studious, to enhance themselves in freedom and to assist those who need personal and monetary help in order to uplift everyone in society. The day was made colorful by the various performances of the children like speeches on the freedom fighters, dances, and fancy dress. When the program ended, the children were sent home with cool drinks and sweets.

Family Day

Chennai – Though the 21st century fascinates us with all its advancements and innovations, the place to be truly happy is still reserved for the family because it is the place where everyone is recognized and strengthened. At Don Guanella Major Seminary the memory remains fresh of the Family Day celebration on August 15th with the Guanellian Lay Movement and their families. Fr. Michael was the main celebrant of the Holy Mass and other community fathers concelebrated. He rightly preached that the Family of Nazareth must be the paradigm of our families to lead ourselves to be the specially chosen people of God. After Mass, Theology brothers entertained the families with their thundering songs and colorful dances. Agape was served in the spirit of fraternity and joyfulness. Representatives from the Guanellian Lay Movement thanked Fr. Samson for hosting such a beautiful event and Fr. Francis for organizing it well.

First Residential Home in India

Chennai-House dedicationlChennai – God is ever-faithful to those who call on Him with hope. Don Guanella Major Seminary is ever thankful to God for helping them realize His work. In fact it took many long years to actualize this project. With all the strenuous efforts taken by the community fathers and the major superiors, the work to build a residential home for the first time in India began February 12, 2017 when the foundation stone was laid. It is a memorable day in the history of the Guanellian family as the work was finished June 29, 2018. Fr. Soosai Rathinam, the Provincial Superior, unveiled and blessed the house. He celebrated the holy Mass in the august presence of 30 priests, other religious and the faithful. During his homily Fr. Rathinam expressed his sincere thanks to the community fathers for carrying out this project meticulously; he presented them a gift as a token of appreciation. Fr. Samson, Community Superior, thanked all the benefactors and well wishers for their generosity towards God’s work for the needy and unloved in society. And he also said that Fr. Guanella is happy and blessing us from above for this work. A fellowship meal was shared in remembrance of this celebration.

Renewal of Vows

Chennai-vow renewalChennai – For Guanellians, the month of June remains a Month of Fervor as our Founder mentions, because in this month the perpetually professed confreres renew their vows. On June 8th ten priests at Don Guanella Major Seminary renewed their vows in the Devotion of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. Fr. A. Periyanayagam presided over Mass and Fr. Soosai Rathinam, Provincial Superior, gave the homily. He spoke of the devotion that our founder had to the Heart of Jesus and reminded us that our hearts must be like the heart of Jesus burning with love for the poor, needy and all those who say I have no one. At the end of the Mass the confreres renewed their vows to the Sacred Heart of Jesus.

Never Weary of Learning

Chennai-natural healingChennai – Don Guanella Major Seminary organized a workshop on Siddha Medicine (a Tamil form of natural medicine) June 1st – 4th. Dr. B. Sundhara Meenal BSMS was the presenter. She started the course by explaining the importance of the natural herbs that are available in and around us. She further taught that though it takes time to heal, there will surely be an effect on the diseases. She mentioned many times, health is wealth and it needs to be well cared for and above all, we need to show love and care because it is God’s unique gift to each individual. Brothers were happy that she taught them how to administer first aid with the natural herbs available in our garden. When there was time for questions, she clarified their doubts and the brothers benefited greatly. Towards the end, Fr. Samson, Superior, thanked Dr. Meenal for spending her time teaching the brothers the value of Tamil natural medicines available all around us.

The World is a Book

Chennai – If the world is a book, those who do not travel read only one page. To assist the theology students to read more pages, the Don Guanella Major Seminary community organized an annual two-day tour. The journey departed from DGMS on March 20th with the prayer of Fr. Samson. The first day was joyfully spent in Valparai visiting many tourist places and Churches. Breezy wind and natural sceneries offered peaceful relaxation and mesmerized the travelers. The second day journey began from Valparai to Palkad. The confreres enjoyed the day, sharing their togetherness and happiness with all the community members.