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Annual Retreat of the Marist Brothers in Tewetta

14/09/2012: Sri Lanka

Almost all the Marist Brothers of South Asian Province gathered at the Retreat House at Ragama ,Tewetta, in the Diocese of Colombo, Sri Lanka, for their annual retreat. This was the first time that the whole Province got-together for a common exercise of this nature.

Brother Seán Sammon, the former Superior General, was the facilitator and at the very outset he emphasized the importance of community and personal prayer’, and the value of silence. We had community prayers followed by the Eucharist.

There were two reflections a day animated by Brother Seán. In the afternoon we had the Marial prayer followed by a sharing session. In the evening we had presentations from different communities of the South Asian province followed by evening prayer.

The reflections of Brother Seán consisted of Religious life in the Church today , the spirituality of young brothers and Mid life spirituality , Marist Community life, and prayer, Celibate chastity and promotion of vocations and Marist Mission.

A quite a lot of time allocated for personal prayer and reflection. In the afternoons we had long discussions and sharing of ideas. It was very helpful to internalize the salient points of the lectures given by Brother Sean.

The main emphasis of the whole retreat was on community building and a sense of Marist Spirituality.

Rev. Father Wilfred Pinto was the celebrant of the daily Eucharist. His homilies and introductions were quite inspiring and enabled the brothers to get into deeper reflections.

On the 15th of August there was a special seminar on Protection of children from abuses and that was facilitated by Brother Jim Jolley who works in the International Office of the Child Rights of the Marist Brothers in Geneva.

Some Marist Lay Partners joined the brothers on this day and took part in this seminar. All the school Principals were requested to plan out a strategy to execute in their respective schools in order to safe guard the children’s. He high lighted the gravity of the problem and requested brothers to be serious with regard to Child Protection.

On the 16th August the Province had its annual picnic which helped to smother the tension created during the retreat.

Our sincere thanks to Br. Seán who led us to reflective and prayerful time after several months of arduous work’.

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