The scholastics Christophe Mendy and Francisco Mendy have been following their formative path in Colombia since 2018. They come from the Province of Our Lady of Africa, Senegal.
On Sunday, July 11, 2021, after having completed the scholasticate stage (theological studies) that is, the three years of theology in Bogotá, we arrived in Brazil to experience afresh fraternal life together and to discover how to live our charism in that country.
Indeed, as part of the formative process of the Scholasticate, after completing theology in Colombia (Saint John XXIII Province), we are beginning a new experience in Brazil, (Our Lady of Guadalupe Province). Thus, before sharing what has been the beginning of the experience in Brazil, we wish to express our gratitude to all the brothers of the Province of St John XXIII: We are very grateful for what we have lived during the three years in Bogotá and, above all, for the occasions of fraternal sharing in the different communities of Colombia in general and with each brother in particular.
On our arrival on July 11, we were welcomed by the prenovitiate community (The Emmaus Cenacle in Dom Cabral). A very fraternal welcome was shown by all the young people who are in formation in this Cenacle. In a very special way we thank Fathers Elissandro Santos SSS (director of the prenovices) and Eduardo Sales SSS (superior of the community) for the fraternal love with which they received us. Moreover, on the Sunday of our arrival, the joy of sharing lunch with the members of the prenovitiate community was all increased by the presence of Father Marcelo da Silva SSS, the Provincial Superior who wanted to welcome us on behalf of the entire provincial community. After arrival and reception, in the days that followed we were able to visit and meet the brothers of the communities: Boa Viagem, Caratinga and Rio de Janeiro where we were made very welcome.
At the request of Father Elissandro SSS, we have had the joy and the opportunity to lead the mid-year retreat of the prenovices to Caratinga on the theme: vocation and Eucharistic spirituality in the light of the Gift of Self.
In fact, this retreat was an opportune occasion to share with our brothers in this prenovitiate stage the sense of deepening the richness of our charism and spirituality by highlighting the importance of fraternity as the central pillar of happiness at this stage of the formation process. This was in light of the writings of our Father Founder, Saint Peter-Julian Eymard. It was also a way for us as scholastics to rediscover and, above all, to allow ourselves to be challenged and strengthened by the beauty and richness of the Eucharistic vocation.
Now, with the expectation of learning or, rather, of starting a language course in Portuguese and also being able to contribute (even though just a little about the pastoral ministry) to the project of the Province of Our Lady of Guadalupe, we want to thank the CLAS that has given us the possibility of having this new experience in order, on the one hand, to discover and get to know the Province of Our Lady of Guadalupe and, on the other, of being able to share the life of the brothers of this Province. So, in advance, we want to thank all the brothers of the Province of Our Lady of Guadalupe.
“We wish to express our gratitude to all the brothers of the Province of St John XXIII and to the CLAS that has given us the possibility of having this new experience.”
Brothers Christophe Mendy and Francisco Mendy, sss
Colombia, NOTIBIP 72 - August 2021