Brethren, Bro Mon Arguelles (CC for India) and I went on mission to India from November 25 to December 2, 2016. We went to the states of West Bengal (Kolkata), Assam (Dibrugarh) and Bihar (Patna). It was a blessed and fruitful mission, arranged very well by our Country Servant for India, A.V. Jose.
On November 25, together with bro Jose, we had an audience for a very animated discussion on CFC India (CFCI) and LCSC, with Abp Thomas D’Souza, archbishop of Kolkata. He is very positive. Later his Vicar General, Fr Dominic Gomes, said we must bring CFCI to all parishes of Kolkata.
Then we visited the Mother House of the Missionaries of Charity, where Mother Teresa started her mission and where she is buried. In the evening we met our CFCI brethren in a prayer assembly, with about 27 attendees.
On November 26 we flew to Dibrugarh, Assam. In the evening we met with 16 priests of the diocese, who traveled long distances to meet with us. We had an animated Q&A. The support of the priests there for CFCI is very strong.
On November 27 we went to the Divine Retreat Center in Margherita for the CFCI assembly. There were over 2,500 brethren. There was worship, talks, fellowship and a program. It was inspiring to see so many of our brethren, a number of whom were tribals working in the tea plantations.
On November 28 we visited Bp Joseph Aind, SDB, bishop of Assam, together with his Vicar General, Fr Lezar. The discussions went very well, and they are very supportive of CFCI.
Over the next 3 days from Nov 29 to Dec 1, we had our conference on Amoris Laetitia and Family Evangelization at the Bihar Regional Pastoral Center. This was hosted by CFCI in collaboration with the CCBI Family Commission. There were 142 participants, composed of 6 bishops, 122 priests, 6 nuns and 8 lay people. They were heads of the Family Commissions of all 130+ Latin rite dioceses in India. Bp Lawrence Pius, Chair, CCBI Family Commission was present. There was one talk on Amoris Laetitia given by Fr Milton Gonsalves, Executive Secretary of the CCBI Family Commission. The rest of the talks were given by me, bro Jose and bro Mon. These were on Family and Evangelization, Live Christ Share Christ, Live the Word, LBS, and Live Pure. The bishop who celebrated mass on Dec 1 said in his homily that he was convinced that only CFC can do something for the family. Later the archbishop of Patna, Abp William D’Souza, arrived. There were very many positive comments coming from the participants.
On Dec 2 we had a CFC Assembly, with 70 brethren attending. In the evening bro Mon and I flew back to Manila, arriving the next day.
CFCI, especially our bro Jose, is very well respected by very many bishops and priests in India. As big as the work already is, the conference will certainly open more doors for CFCI throughout all of India.
God be praised.