News from Madagascar

St. Francis feast in the house St. Joseph of Antananarivo

May the Peace of the Lord be with you!

We have wished to have a simple celebration in the spirit of Franciscan simplicity. Brothers started their course in the seminary since 29th September. This made us have a renewal of the vows of 5 brothers here: brothers Christophe, Michel, Charles, Berchemas and Mathias.

Brother Alain Bouchard was sub-delegate of the Custos Br. Pascal Rivo to receive the brothers’ vows.

We had a nice Solemn Eucharistic celebration on the 4th morning at 6:30 and later, we had breakfast in the road go the seminary. The renewal of the vows in the solemn evening prayer took place as follow: usually, in the beginning there was psalms and appropriate reading from the gospel regarding vocation.

There followed silent moment and a song to the Holy Spirit that was followed by brothers’ demand to renew their religious vows, then the word of the main celebrant.

I would like at this occasion to share with you this mystery THE NEWNESS OF CHRIST. The intervention of Christ arrives as a complete and ultimate newness. It calls to conversion.

But this conversion is not only that of moral order, rather it is a change of attitude, change of the way one sees things, it is itself the passage to faith, faith in the infinite love.

Which is this newness that Christ presents: it’s his being itself, it’s his word, and it’s his Gospel. We are in allocated in the sight to take decision at this point.

The conversion constitutes a gesture that you will take in renewing your vows.  Of living the gospel by following Jesus Christ, in the steps of St. Francis of Assisi. Without anything of our own and in obedience as our rule stresses it.

Dearest brother, there is no other way apart from him; he presents himself as a unique way for human being. He does not present himself as a master of wisdom. He intervenes in telling us first to attach ourselves to him, to be his disciples by following and being with him.

He tells us to associate ourselves to himself in following him along the road that he has traced during his life time up to his death and resurrection. The spirit of Christ will guide your lives of pilgrimage up to the whole truth.

That is a wish that I am formulating for you in this moment of renewal of your vows to the newness that Christ brings to you. He will always be new depending on your faithfulness to him. May the grace of the Holy Spirit go along with you. Amen.

After a bit of silence, 5 brothers on the knees in front of the main Celebrant, recited their engagement formular. And the prayer was ended with magnificate and final prayer.

There was a suitable meal with the dance accompanying the cake as well as a short speech, of following St. Francis some times marching in dry place as people in the desert.

There was a lot of   jubilation as each brother did what he could to make the feast enjoyable.