Fr François Drouilly in Oceania

Since mid December Fr François Drouilly sm, from Paris, has been preaching retreats in Oceania. He started in Vanuatu for the SMSM communities gathered in Port Vila.

From Dec 27 he is gving three diocesan retreats "open to all" (including the Marist Fathers and Brothers SM), at the SMSM Retreat Center of Mont Mou and at Thabor, the former novitiate of the Little Daughters of Mary, near St Louis.  

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Above: Three co-novices, professed in September 1963, Fr François Grossin, Abp Michel Calvet and Fr François Drouilly.



Report on Hesed 2016

This year twelve young religious gathered at the Marist Brothers Novitiate at Lomeri for the Hesed program.  The Hesed program is run by the Conference of Major Superiors of the Pacific Islands (CMSPI) each year when there are sufficient numbers of candidates preparing for perpetual profession.

Fr Tony Kennedy sm and Sr Esther Powell dolc were the two facilitators.  There were seven men and five women from six different congregations.  There were four Sisters of Our Lady of Nazareth, a Missionary Sister of the Society of Mary, a Marist Brother and six seminarians.  They included three MSC seminarians, two from the Marist Fathers and one from the Columban Fathers.  They came from Kiribati, Fiji, Samoa and the Solomon Islands.

During the program there were sessions on Community Life, Childhood Memories, Laudato Si, the religious vows: Poverty, Chastity, and Obedience, Technology and Addictions and Commitment.  A highlight was the presentations that the young religious gave on each of the vows.  Another was the deep level of sharing and trust that developed in each of the sharing groups.

There was space for silence and individual reflection as well as sharing in groups each day. 

We wish these young religious women and men well as they take the next step in their journey of faith.

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 Above: Hesed 2016  
1216 Hesed PatSSC Monica SMSM Peter SM Mika SM  
Above: Pat SSC, Monica SMSM, Peter SM, Mika SM  
1216 Hesed Jumping for Joy1216 Hesed Three Marists Peter Tony Mika  
 Above: Three Marists at Hesed - Peter, Tony and Mika   |   Jumping for joy!  


150 years of presence on Nengone

The Catholic Church celebrated the sesquicentenary of her presence on Maré/Nengone island form Nov 21 thru 27. It went very well, with great fervour and enthusiasm, and beautiful songs, dances and meals.

At one stage or another, three Marist confreres took part to the celebrations: Archbishop Calvet of course, but also Fr François Grossin, the Regional Superior, and Fr Steeve Oudocopoé, the second Kanak Marist priest for ever. The sacraments of Christian Initiation were celebrated one per day.

On Sunday, the Archbishop gave the Cross and the Bible to six new catechists. For the occasion most of the parish buildings have been renovated, including the church of La Roche. The Marist Cells for evangelization came in big numbers from Vanuatu: 75 of them, and offered a beautiful Atchin carved drum.

The last Marist parish priest of Maré was Fr Denis Jacquin, who introduced the Cells movement in his vast sector nowadays in diocesan hands. An Exhibition paid tribute to the Marists for their decisive contribution to the implantation of the Church in Nengone. 

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 Above:  Celebrations at Maré
1216 Mare 2. L D Fr Oudodopoe Fr Suta Abp Calvet Fr Grossin1216 Mare 3. Carved drum offered by the Marist Cells of Atchin Malekula
 Above: Fr Oudodopoe, Fr Suta, Archbishop Calvet, Fr Grossin   |   Carved drum offered by the Marist Cells of Atchin, Malekula
1216 Mare 5. Tombs of Fr Beaulieu R and Br Reboul L at La Roche1216 Mare 4. boy

 Above: a boy of Maré     |     Tombs of Fr Beaulieu (R) and Br Reboul (L) at La Roche

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 Prayers for General Chapter

From Rome and the headquarters of the Society of Mary, secretary, Sophie Janssens, has sent the special prayer to be used in preparations for the General Chapter of 2017.

In seven languages the prayer card features the image of 'Our Lady of the Journey' recently enshrined in the General House.

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 Download prayer from here:

English | Dutch | French | German | Italian | Portuguese | Spanish



Thirty years of Douarre College

 In 1986, the school of Saint-Joseph in Ouvéa, conducted by the Brothers of the Sacred Heart, moved to Fayaoué and was transformed into a college under the patronage of Mgr Guillaume Douarre, first Vicar Apostolic of New Caledonia.

For the 126 pupils of the college this 30th anniversary was an occasion to recall the first Mass celebrated on Caledonian soil on Christmas Day 1843. 

Hghlight of the event was the presentation of a sandalwood bust Mgr Douarre  from Mr Pierre-Chanel Mindia of Hulup. The sculpture was blessed by Fr François Grossin on Dec 2, during a Thanksgiving Mass for the College's 30 years of existence and the closing of the school year.

The parents of the students were invited and a birthday cake shared by all. An address from the Director, Mr Benjamin Malié, was followed by songs and dances: everything contributed to the success of this day marked by a nostalgia for the students of 3rd nicknamed 'JGRLB', as the chorus of their song shows: 'Thirty years already you welcome generations. 2016 is the saddest year of our life because we will leave you. 5th to 3rd were the craziest years. JGRLB will forever be engraved in our hearts.'

Congratulations to the College Pastoral Team for this very successful celebration!

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Above: The sandalwood bust of Mgr Douarre. Below:  Douarre College, and earlier images of the bishop. 
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Diaconate ordination at Honiara

Humphrey Karua, 39, was ordained deacon by Archbishop Adrian Smith SM at Holy Cross Cathedral, Honiara, on Nov 27. Hailing from Tarapaina, Malatia, Solomon Islands, Humphrey did pre-seminary studies at Nazareth Apostolic Centre in 2004 and seminary studies at Holy Name of Mary Seminary, Tenaru from 2005-2007. 

He transferred to the Marists in 2008 and was professed in 2011, completing his studies at Pacific Regional Seminary in 2014 and has ministered in Dala and Tanagai in 2015-16. 

Humphrey made his perpetual professin this year and will continue to be a member of our Marist Regional House Community, Tanagai, and minister as a deacon in the Tanagai Parish.

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 1216 Karua diac 31216 Karua diac 11216 Karua diac 2