God’s love can never be measured or understood by human capacity. Even at these hard times, where everything is falling apart, humans are losing hope of future and life has become difficult to live; God called fourteen of us to commit ourselves to His service and love. I feel it is God’s mercy that has made us worthy to reach up to this stage irrespective of our failures and short comings.
The ceremonies of Perpetual Vows and Diaconate Ordination for this year were held on 23rd and 24th January 2021. Though the pandemic is still persisting, both the days’ ceremonies were filled with joy and happiness. Those two days were memorable events as they impacted our lives as we said ‘Yes’ to the divine call of God by committing ourselves totally to the Society of the Divine Word. The first day’s celebration began with prayer and veneration of our saints at the grotto of St. Arnold Janssen and St. Joseph Freinademetz. This event was witnessed by priests and religious women who had come from different parts of our country. Since the number of participants was restricted because of the pandemic, the event was livestreamed through which our family members and friends could participate. The main celebrant of the Holy Eucharist was Fr. Richard Mathias SVD (INM Provincial), who in his homily enlightened us on the importance of becoming the Divine Word which was the theme for the Perpetual Vows. After the Holy Eucharist, we were felicitated by the community members. It was an important occasion for us as we became the permanent members of the SVD family. We are grateful to all the formators at various stages of our formation who formed us to be the missionaries. We are also deeply indebted to Rev. Fr. Superior General, Paulus Budi Kleden SVD and his Council for approving our request to profess the Perpetual Vows in the Society of the Divine Word.
The liturgy of the Ordination to the Diaconate began with the prayer at the grotto of Mother Mary. The main celebrant of the Holy Eucharist was His Grace Archbishop John Barwa SVD, who in his homily rightly said, ‘Loving service is a call. The purpose of being a servant is to love. A servant must have the mind-set of his Mater. If our service is not attaining its purpose, then all our efforts are futile’. He also said that the world needs to recognize that we belong to Christ, not by our words but by our actions. Through Diaconate ordination we were elevated one step closer to the altar of God and moreover to become the ministers of the Church. Thus these two days were memorable and unforgettable days of our life which filled our hearts with joy and gratitude as like our Mother Mary we said, “My soul glorifies the Lord.”
– Dn. Lucas Parkhe (DWS)