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Vestition of 6 New Novices in Myanmar

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New Novices in Myanmar

Due to the continuous threat of Covid 19 and civil unrest, the friars in Myanmar had not been able to send postulants to Hong Kong for formation during these past two years. With the uncertainty of the political situation in the country, the Province deemed it necessary to establish a novitiate in the country and continue to receive the candidates into the Order. After all the needed permissions, the pre-novices were then moved to the designated formation house and prepared to begin the novitiate. The plan was interrupted once again just before Christmas when all the pre-novices and the formators were tested positive for Covid 19. It took them all three weeks to fully recover. After overcoming many obstacles and difficulties, we were able to set January 28 as the date to begin the novitiate.

On the day of the Feast of St. Thomas Aquinas, the pre-novices got up early proceeded to our Parish in Shwe Pyi Thar. Many parishioners numbering about 200 hundred were there to attend the vestition ceremony. The brothers in their black and white suits, lively and cheerful looked elegant and graceful.

The ceremony began at 8:00 am at Saint Gemma Galgani Parish Church amid the vibrant angelic voices of children and sisters, the entrance procession of altar boys, pre-novices. The mass was presided by Fr. Alphonso Bobo, OP, House superior of Saint Dominic with Fr. Moses Dereh, OP Master of Novices, Fr. Paul Aung Myint Win OP Parish Priest of Shwe Pyi Thar , Fr. Joseph Pakhu OP assistant Master of Novices, two priest friends of the community Fr. Maurice, MF and Fr. Cyril Nay Myo Htet SJ as co- concelebrants.

In his homily, Fr. Moses admonished the soon-to-be novices with the following words: choosing to respond to the divine call means offering ourselves up to the Father and to our brethren, deciding to follow Christ is the same as determining to leave ourselves behind, choosing religious life is the same as choosing to live for others, and lastly choosing consecrated life means renouncing what I want, and doing what God wants.

                After the homily, the ceremony of vestition and admission to the Novitiate continued as prescribed in the rite. After expressing their intentions, the pre-novices were clothed with Dominican habits, given a copy of the Constitution, and were admonished to keep it faithfully. After the ceremony of reception of the novices into Order had been concluded, the mass continued amid the jubilant hymns sung by the children of the parish.

Today is indeed a joyful day not only for the friars in Myanmar, and the Province of Our Lady of the Rosary but also for the whole Church in large because we have received new vocations into the Order who are willing to dedicate their lives for God and for the people. Let us pray for the perseverance of our young brothers in their vocational journey and for all the brothers assigned in Myanmar that they are protected from harm and be able to carry out their missions undisturbed.