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Take Heart. Towards a New Beginning



Perpetual profession of Brother Jonnel M. Sisneros

27/01/2017: Philippines

Brother Jonnel M. Sisneros made his final vows on Jan. 21 in General Santos City, the Philippines.

Provincial superior of East Asia, Brother Robert Teoh, received his vows on behalf of superior general Brother Emili Turú.

Over 200 people including brothers, lay mission partners, family members and relatives took part in the Eucharistic celebration.

Br Jonnel M. Sisneros was born the third of four children on 24 June 1990 in Monkayo, the Philippines.

He first met the Marist Brothers in 2006 while working for a degree in accountancy in Mindanao. 

Br Jonnel then joined the brothers and finished the pre-novitiate formation in 2008, the novitiate in 2010 and the post-novitiate in 2013. 

After the post-novitiate, he taught religious education and mathematics at Marist School Marikina from 2013 to 2015.  

Br Jonnel then taught religious education from 2015 to 2016 at Notre Dame of Dadiangas University Integrated Basic Education Department.

Before making his perpetual profession, he took part in a two-month preparation course in Lomeri, Fiji. 

He is currently at the Marist School Marikina community on the outskirts of Manila.

Below is a text written by Br Radney M. Tio on Br Jonnel’s profession.


Take Heart. Towards a New Beginning

The words above suggest no less than the concept of a journey. This journey comes in innumerable forms, revealed to each of us in incredibly unique ways. Each distinct feature is coined differently by individuals.  Some refer to it as perilous and some are hopeful enough to accept it as a gift; but above all, only one thing is for sure, every journey needs a lifetime companion. 

No wonder then why our little Br. Jonnel “Noy-Noy” Sisneros, FMS prized these words and chose them to be the theme for his Perpetual Profession, solemnly committing his whole being to the edifying journey with God in religious life. It was on 21 January 2017 in the Br. James McKnight Auditorium of Notre Dame of Dadiangas University that the Marist Family gathered to take part in this meaningful ceremony.

Fr. Irvin Morastil, OMI, presided the Eucharistic Celebration which started at 9:00 in the morning.  The Provincial Superior of East Asia, Br. Robert Teoh, accepted Br. Jonnel’s vows in behalf of Br. Emili Turu. The Brothers, Lay Marists from different places, members of the Marist Family and the family, relatives and friends of Br. Jonnel have become witnesses to this simple yet very significant step in the new beginning for both for Br. Jonnel and the Institute.

It is indeed very timely for the bicentenary of the Institute to be gifted with another daring soul who commits to keep the spirit of new Marists in mission alive. The congregation’s own two-hundred-year journey, just like any other’s was not an easy one; it wrestled here and there with the different changes brought by idealism, church reformations and millennial paradigms. However, it is more appropriate to veer into the congregation’s response which made it surmount these mounds and humps. 

Br. Peter J. Rodney, FMS, the homilist, reminded the assembly in his reflection about two characteristics of every Marist - courage and love. He said, “Courage is not the absence of fear but the ability to act in the presence of fear… Love, on the other hand, is the opposite of selfishness.” Practically speaking, these are the exact values which Br. Jonnel shows to the Institute when he made his profession publicly. He had courage when he said, "Yes” despite the present and future challenges and he had love when he offered himself totally to the service of the Church. It is an invigorating sign that the Institute will still continue to be victorious in making a history of its own in future generations.

The Profession, therefore, is a true source of joy and celebration for all of us, Marists of Champagnat. Let this joy flow into our veins and fuel us in our journey of taking heart towards a new beginning. May we walk together as one family. May our varied vocations coalesce into one Spirit.  And may the image of a courageous and loving Marist family mark and capture the whole idea of the new beginning.

Bon voyage, Marists!

Br. Radny M. Tio, FMS

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