District of South East Asia – Montfortian Formation Programme in Singapore.
Inspired by Pope John Paul II’s invitation to promote the Montfortian spirituality and charism as well as the central administration’s desire to strengthen the synergy of the Montfortian Charismatic Family, Montfort Centre (Singapore) responded by organising its inaugural Montfortian Formation Programme (MFP).
The MFP was held in Montfort Centre, Singapore from 24 to 27 Aug 2023 with Bishop Rozario Menezes, SMM as the main preacher and animator. A total of 26 participants (lay associates and religious) from across 4 countries (Indonesia, Philippines, Sabah & Singapore) took part in this significant event. It was beautiful to witness both the lay associates Montfortian Gabrielite Associates and religious (Montfort Brothers of St. Gabriel & Montfort Missionaries) coming together as a Montfortian Charismatic family to deepen and grow their understanding and appreciation of Montfortian spirituality. It was most unfortunate though that the Daughters of Wisdom and Friends of Wisdom were unable to join this time round.
As the current serving bishop of the diocese of Lae, Papua New Guinea, Bishop Rozario generously shared many personal stories from his mission in Papua New Guinea and how the spirituality of Montfort only began to make sense in his lived experience as a missionary. He further reminded participants that no one is chosen by chance but because God has a special plan for each one. He challenged the participants to consider how their own vocation story reveals God’s unceasing love for them all these while. The six sessions presented by Bishop Rozario were on:
- Gift of Life – Birth & Baptism at Montfort;
- Trust in God – Surrender to God’s Providence;
- Poverty and Service to Humanity – The poor in the life of Montfort and his service to them;
- Prayer, Contemplation & Creation – A way to God;
- Cross of Christ & mine – How do I see suffering in my personal life?
- Mary my Mother – A True & Loving Marian Devotion;
Montfortian prayers such as the Little Crown of Mary, Praise to Mary and Adoration with the Rosary according to Montfort were animated by the Montfortian Gabrielite Associates from Sabah and Singapore. Participants also had lively conversations and fellowship over meals as they discussed how to further collaborate with one another at a Southeast Asian level.
The programme culminated with a Mass celebrated by Bishop Rozario, who offered up all the souls of the faithful departed from our Montfortian Charismatic Family in Southeast Asia.
May this inaugural MFP be a catalyst for more opportunities to gather, connect and be formed as one Montfortian Charismatic Family at national, regional and global levels!