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“Make of the world one family”

Xaverian Mission Volume 60 - No. 3 | August 2012

Newsletter

www.xaviermissionaries.org • Mission Blog: www.global-catholic.org

CELEBRATING AFRICA

Letter from a Seminarian............................. 2 Tribute to Brother Perin............................... 3 Church Dedicated to Saint Guido............ 4 African Night in Massachusetts................. 5 Africae Munus....................................................... 6 Sources of Missionary Spirit......................... 8 St. Guido: Missionary to the World........ 9


Xaverian Missionaries in the World

The Legacy of Saint Guido Maria Conforti

A Seminarian’s Story X averian Missionaries Provincial Headquarters 12 Helene Court Wayne, NJ 07470-2813 Tel.: (973) 942-2975 Fax: (973) 942-5012 Email: missionmedia@xaviermissionaries.org

Xavier Knoll Mission Center 4500 Xavier Drive Franklin, WI 53132-9066 Tel.: (414) 421-0831 Fax: (414) 421-9108 Email: franklin@xaviermissionaries.org

Global Youth Mission Services (GYM) Fatima Shrine 101 Summer Street P.O. Box 5857 Holliston, MA 01746-5857 Tel.: (508) 429-2144 Fax: (508) 429-4793 Email: holliston@xaviermissionaries.org

Xaverian Mission Newsletter Official publication of the Xaverian Missionaries of the United States

Publisher Fr. Carl Chudy Editorial Team Fr. Tony Lalli Fr. Joseph Matteucig Editor Mary Aktay Printing AlphaGraphic, Totowa, NJ Email & Web:

missionmedia@xaviermissionaries.org website: www.xaviermissionaries.org mission blog: www.global-catholic.org St. Guido site: www.guidoconforti.com www.facebook.com/catholicmissionaries www.twitter.con/worldcatholic

Donation: $5.00 per year

Tribute to Brother Antonio Perin

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he priesthood has been my desire since when I was very young (8 years old onwards) attending Mass with my mother in my village, Kakendema. I always felt a special inner joy and peace listening to the word of God from the Xaverian Missionaries in our village chapel which was built by them. They were always full of joy, missionary zeal and great love for the people. They served the poor and the neediest; fostered education (building schools, training catechists, laity and local priests); were involved in inter-religious dialogue, justice and peace and gave great witness through personal discipline in proclaiming the gospel through learning the local language and our culture. In fact before the Xaverians arrived 60 years ago my village in the diocese of Makeni was an area where Christ Jesus had not yet been known by the people. Today there are many Christians and I am one of them baptized by Fr. Domingo and confirmed by Emeritus Bishop George Biguzzi in 1994. Thus it was a great joy for me to participate in our Christian community following the teachings of the church and the word of God in the Holy Bible through the efforts of Xaverians. I decided to join the Xaverian missionaries after High School when I was studying university courses on Economics and Administration. I had two choices in my mind: one was to be a priest in the future; another was to finish my university studies, get a good job and get married and have children. My mind was so divided that I lost my Inner peace. I started praying constantly, visiting the Blessed Sacrament and reading the word of God asking the Lord Jesus Christ to help me. One evening after praying and meditating in silence I saw a paper card placed in my younger brother’s room with the image of Jesus on it with these words: CHRIST HAS A PROPOSAL FOR YOU! LORD WHAT DO YOU WANT OF ME? “COME FOLLOW ME!” A paraphrasing of the poem of St. Teresa of Avila followed: Christ has no hands: He has only our hands to do His work. Christ has no feet: He has only our feet to guide people on His path. Christ has no lips: He has only our lips to tell people about Himself. Christ has no means: He has only our help to lead people to Himself. Simon Kabba Koroma Theological Student, Xaverian Missionaries Parma, Italy

(Simon’s journey continues in the next issue of Xaverian Mission) You can help seminarians follow Christ’s call. Contact: Fr. Frank Grappoli, SX 12 Helene Court Wayne, NJ 07470 Tel: 973-942-2975 Or visit: www.xaviermissionaries.org for online donations

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Xaverian Mission Newsletter • August 2012

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y name is Anthony M. Sesay, I am one of the fortunate young men to be taught by Brother Perin during his tireless missionary service in Sierra Leone, West Africa.

First of all, I would like to express my sincere condolences to his family, friends, and relatives and to the entire Catholic Mission of late Brother Antonio Perin. I would also like to express sincere gratitude for the support which you have given to Brother Perin at the time of his missionary service in Sierra Leone, which has successfully given birth into giant trees that will never vanish on earth. When I learned of his death and the circumstances in which he passed, I felt as if I have lost my father. I miss him very much. I remember that last day when he told us that he may never come back again, but none of us could ever imagine that it would be true.

Your son, your brother, your uncle, your cousin, your friend and your missionary brother, who had forsaken the luxury and pleasures of the western world and traveled to Sierra Leone to spread the word of our Lord Jesus Christ which changed the lives of so many young men, spiritually and socially. For Br. Perin to serve in this part of the world was a sacrifice through the love of Christ, which Br. Perin had solemnly demonstrated during his golden days on earth. Living here had many trials and tribulations which Br. Perin was able to amass into love and joy. As a small boy, I had known Br. Perin as a devoted man of God, who taught the word of Christ through his example. As children, we always knew Brother Perin as a father, who always provided his children with food, education, clothing and other family related responsibilities. He was so attached to us as his own children in Christ. There was nothing we could not ask from Brother Perin Due to what I have learned without him providing it to us. from Brother Perin I have As a young boy, I can remember after dinner he would teach us been able to help and influence to speak Italian, of which I am proud today.

other people’s lives.

Br. Perin was a very humble outstanding man among his fellow missionaries. He made sure to prepare food and kept the house clean for whenever missionaries came to visit. He grew a vegetable and fruit garden, and also raised poultry. He taught us to collect fire wood for the use of the mission, which saved him money which he used for our daily affairs. It was from this practice I developed a personal interest in agriculture. And after secondary school, I went on to study General Agriculture for two years. I am now a father of three children. I decided to name my son Perin (as his first name) as a dedication to the man who raised me as his own son. I will pass on to my children all of the values, morals and respect for others that I learned from Br. Perin. Through Br. Perin’s guidance I was able to have balance in my social and spiritual life. Due to what I have learned from Br. Perin I have been able to help and influence other people’s lives. I am proud to tell everyone I meet that I am who I am today because of Br. Perin’s dedication to me. Yours truly, Anthony M. Sesay Presently residing in USA (Brother Antonio Perin served in Sierra Leone until his untimely death in 2003 Anthony Sesay is the tall young man to left of Br. Perin.)

Xaverian Mission Newsletter • August 2012

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Xaverian Missionaries in the USA

Xaverian Missionaries in the World

Church in Makeni Dedicated to Saint Guido Maria Conforti

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he St. Guido Conforti Parish is located in the City of Makeni, in northern Sierra Leone. The Diocese, was founded by the Xaverian Missionaries in 1950 under the leadership of late Bishop Augustus F. Azzolini. Recently retired Bishop George Biguzzi followed in the footsteps of Bishop Azzolini for more than 25 years. Since their arrival in that part of the country over 60 years ago, the Xaverian Missionaries have contributed to the development of education, healthcare and are very active in human promotion initiatives in the entire Northern Province. Fr. Carl Chudy SX

Africa Night at the Xaverian Missionaries in Massachusetts

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n Saturday, April 28, 2012 AFJN Executive Director Dominican Father Aniedi Okure and Policy Analyst Bahati Jacques conducted an information session at the Xaverian Missionaries community in Holliston Massachusetts. The session was organized by AFJN Board member and Xaverian Father Rocco Puopolo and attracted over sixty participants from the Boston Metro area. The session focused on the theme of the Second Synod of Bishop for Africa – The Church at the service of reconciliation, Justice and Peace – and discussed its implications for the Church and the United States. The staff noted that the Church in Africa is concerned about building a just social order, tackling the injustices inflicted on the peoples by its leaders and foreign corporations, good governance, human rights violations, land grab, displacement of local population by either foreign multinationals, wars or natural disasters, the extractive industry, oil spills & environmental pollution, and the dumping of toxic wastes in Africa by foreign corporations. Participants were called upon to support the Church in Africa’s effort to build a just social order, to engage their elected officials with these issues, to ask them to support just policies towards the peoples of Africa and to hold American companies engaged in exploiting Africa accountable. Get more involved with issues that affect our brothers and sisters in Africa. Go to the AFJN website: www.afjn.org to learn more.

Middle: Bishop Biguzzi consecrates the new altar. Bottom: Parishioners gather at the church dedication. Bro. Joeven, a Xaverian Missionary from the Philippines sits second from the right in the second row.

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Xaverian Mission Newsletter • August 2012

Xaverian Mission Newsletter • August 2012

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Africa Arise!

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frica Arise!!!! These were the final words of the homily that Pope Benedict gave at the conclusion of the 2009 African Synod, celebrated in Rome in October with over 300 bishops participating from around the Catholic world. This gesture of energy and hope continued to be played out as Pope Benedict XVI issued Africae Munus, Latin for Africa’s Commitment, his follow up statement to the 56 proposals made by the Bishops at the Synod which was published this past November 2011. Now is it a matter of getting the word out!!!

The Synod of 2009 had as its theme The Church in Service to Justice, Reconciliation and Peace. This had been one of the topics of the earlier African Synod of 1994, all presented under the umbrella of the Family of God. But due to ongoing wars and continued exploitation of minerals and poor governance in many countries, a more focused discussion was to be made. The month long synod produced practical propositions that were sent to the pope for his consideration and further reflection. These were meant to foster a culture of forgiveness, peace and reconciliation throughout Africa, address the challenge of good governance and ways that the Church could encourage it, suggest ways to build a just social order throughout the continent, combat human rights abuses and halt the war economies that are plaguing many countries of Africa. Africa is at risk of being plundered once more, not through political colonization but economic means. Land grabbing, displacement of persons due to oil and mineral exploitation, toxic waste dumping and more still create instability, poverty and hunger. These are man made disasters.

The recently passed and signed Dodd-Frank Act from last year’s Congress, section 1502, requires publicly traded companies in the US to disclosure whether or not their products contain conflict minerals from the Democratic Republic of the Congo that when sold fuel the conflict by providing monies to purchase munitions. The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is in charge of making the rules for this provision. It has been over one year and the SEC has yet to issue those rules, and there is a lot of pressure from business interests to make the rules weak. Congress intended that the rules be strong. For more information on this see http://www. afjn.org/focus-campaigns.html Also kudos to the Massachusetts Legislature for the pending H3982, An Act Relative to Congo Conflict Minerals. This landmark piece of legislation will prohibit the Commonwealth of Massachusetts from contracting with companies who fail to comply with Federal reporting requirements to combat the trade of minerals funding the conflict in the eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo. Massachusetts has the opportunity to show its leadership in protecting the rights and lives of the Congolese people and encourage development and conflict-free products. We encourage our Massachusetts readers to become familiar with this proposed law and ask your state legislators to support it. The propositions from the 2009 African Synod may be found on www.yesafricamatters.org. Africae Munus can be found on www.vatican.va. Search for Africae Munus. Fr. Rocco Puopolo SX Photo: Celebration in Sierra Leone, Fr. Marselinus Rante Taruk, SX

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Xaverian Mission Newsletter • August 2012

Xaverian Mission Newsletter • August 2012

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The Global Mission Spirituality

of Saint GuidoStories Mariaof Conforti Missionary Courage

Sources of the Missionary Spirit The missionary life is attractive, but also risky. For this reason we are called to make a personal and community verification of our lifestyle, our fundamental choices, our strengths or weaknesses. The sources of the missionary spirit include: • The Word of God • The Lord’s Supper • Gospel Centered Activities 1. The Word of God The constant reference to the Word of God, the Church is missionary as a believer and announcer. Love and prayerful study of the Word of God, as well as the fraternal support in the discernment of the will of God, are of great help to distinguish in our life if it is God’s call or simple personal inclination. The engine of our activities must be the continuous listening to God’s Word. A fundamental conviction must stimulate our missionary activities: the world needs the Gospel of Jesus Christ and awaits him. Where there is indifference, even rejection and persecution, we must first ensure our consistency: the preparation, the style of dialogue, prayer for our listeners, the humble search together led by the Holy Spirit, the proposal of concrete models of people who lived and live in the genuine message that God continually offers to humanity. In proposing the Word of God through preaching, the emphasis is on God’s plan unfolding through the various books of the Bible, the facts and the people who help us to use them to inform our own life. We fall in love with Christ as Savior and his way of life in a new community. We see the lives of Saints who, through the difficulties of life in openness to God and neighbor, have become an example of a living Word of Jesus. 2. The Lord’s Supper The liturgy is the privileged instrument for mission and evangelization and indispensable education to Christian life, the tempo forte (strong calling) of the evangelization-education and the catechumenate. The accompaniment to the faith of the candidate and then baptized must involve the missionary who, with the community, is a sign and instrument of new birth and growth in Christ and in the Church. In the context of the liturgy, I recognize more and more the importance of the centrality of the Paschal mystery of the death and resurrection of Christ. The Eucharist is celebrated as the summit of all the activities of the Church. 3. Gospel Centered Activities

Photos: Fr. Luigi Brioni preaching the Word of God in Sierra Leone A newly Ordained Xaverian priest giving Communion in the DRC Fr. Bruno Boschetti ministering in Mozambique

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In our apostolate we should avoid both self-centered activism and inertia. Mission is not just for education, service to the poor and the sick, and social development: It must express itself in a style of service that becomes a stimulus to cooperation in constant comparison with the Gospel. In a word, our activities must be justified by an educational project. We should concern ourselves so that our operational choices are inspiring and activate the charisms of concrete Christian and human communities. You don’t need to necessarily be “founders,” but you have to be good “sowers” and “models” respectful of the freedom of all. Our activities should be expressed in the dynamism of the missionary mandate which requires a responsible ‘taking care’ of a portion of the vineyard of the Lord. ‘Educate’ also means enhancing the work of others, collaborating on joint projects, learning from each other, and being open to lay spirituality. It is needless to say that these strengths of our missionary life can help only when applied wisely. Fr. Eugenio Pulcini, SX

Xaverian Mission Newsletter • August 2012

Missionary to the World The following is the first of three parts of Fr. Tony Lalli’s reflection on St. Guido Conforti, founder of the Xaverian Missionaries, given at the Holliston MA Soup & Mission Program.

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aint Guido Conforti was “Bishop of Parma, Italy, but also Missionary for the whole world.” This is how Cardinal Angelo Roncalli of Venice, the future Pope John XXIII, described him. Angelo Roncalli had known Bishop Conforti personally and had collaborated with him when the cardinal was a young priest in Rome, in charge of the Pontifical Missionary Works in Italy. Roncalli anticipated the role of the bishops as it would be later defined by the Vatican Council II. The council documents declare that bishops are not only ordained for one Diocese, but for the salvation of the whole world and that Christ’s commandment to preach the Gospel to every creature concerns them, together with the Pope, first and foremost. ‘They should especially be concerned about those parts of the world where the word of God has not yet been proclaimed or where the faithful, particularly because of the small number of priests, are in danger of departing from the precepts of the Christian life, and even of losing the faith itself.’… Conforti shared Jesus’ concerns for the salvation of all mankind: ‘There are other sheep I have that are not of this fold, and these I have to lead as well. They too will listen to my voice, and there will be only one flock and one shepherd.’ (Jn 10:16). He interpreted the words of Jesus in a universal sense,as a message that must reach the entire world and transform it completely … ‘not just one nation or another, but the entire world’…(A. Luca: Bishop and Missionary, G. M. Conforti). On February 17, 1957, the 25th anniversary of Bishop Conforti’s death, Cardinal Roncalli stated: “I looked to him as model of that complete sacred care of souls which unites the Bishop to the Missionary: Bishop of Parma, but Missionary for the whole world.”

While Bishop Conforti was engaged in the preparation and sending of missionaries to China, he continued to occupy himself in the growth of a missionary conscience and responsibility in the dioceses of Italy. Convinced that at the base of the missionary movement, which involves people and means, vocations and help, he did not hesitate to recall and retain in Italy, at least for awhile, his young missionaries in order to send them through the whole country with a car, and even with a film projector. Everywhere they established parish mission groups or associations to organize activities and initiatives for the missions. He believed it was a duty to take some missionaries away from their apostolic activities in the missions in order to give life to an army of supporters at home. (To be continued...) Photos: Top: Young woman proudly wears the canonization scarf.

Fr. Tony Lalli SX

Center: Catholics in Africa show their love for St. Guido. Bottom: Bishop Emeritus George Biguzzi blesses the women of Makeni Diocese.

Xaverian Mission Newsletter • August 2012

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From our USA Communities

World Mission News Digest

World Mission News Digest AFRICA/SIERRA LEONE It is important to bring war criminals to justice, but we also need to improve the population’s economic and social advancement (Agenzia Fides) - Fr. Gerardo Caglioni, a Xaverian missionary with a long experiCharles Taylor ence in Sierra Leone, commented on the former Liberian President, Charles Taylor’s sentence for crimes committed by Sierra Leone’s rebels with his help and endorsement in a neighboring African country. “With Charles Taylor’s sentence, justice has been done, but only in part. Sierra Leone, which a few years ago was hit by civil war, now can certainly breathe a sigh of relief. It is certainly true that other subjects - individuals or Fr. Augustin Gonzalez SX in the DRC. communities - will also have to receive an exemplary sanction, but something substantial will also be returned to the victims of many atrocities. For nearly eleven years, the Country was ransacked and upset by diabolic garrisons that plagued it with all kinds of violence and abuse. Much of the Catholic School In Sierra Leone population was displaced in lands which were not theirs, buildings and community activities were destroyed or damaged. Sierra Leone is also very rich: lots of raw materials, precious minerals that are mined only in a few other nations (bauxite, iron, gold, diamonds), of precious wood, and probably also of abundant oil. Also water, for the production of electricity, Way of the Cross in Chad would be generally abundant in different parts of the Country. So,

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why does this population continue to be among the poorest in the world? An appropriate response must be found and a positive solution offered to so many people. The international community did great things to stop the war and give back to the country more humane conditions, after the terrible “civil war” that invested it. International aid also patched up a good part of the socioeconomic development. After the war, education received a great impetus and the buildings destroyed were largely rebuilt and often multiplied. New means of communication were opened and promising economic initiatives were undertaken. To the best of my knowledge, the present Government of Sierra Leone has been very dynamic in many policy areas and economic development. It is important to bring war criminals to justice. But the economic, social, educational and political improvement of the entire population also needs to be pursued.”

AFRICA/DR CONGO Bishops of Kivu launch the alarm of a large scale war

(Agenzia Fides) - “There are consistent indications that evoke the specter of a war which still has hidden reasons.” This was the warning given by the Bishops of the Ecclesiastical Province of Bukavu in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), in a message sent to the Congolese political authorities. The Bishops say it is necessary to prevent a global war on the horizon. The document lists the tensions and violence that may escalate into a larger war: the concurrent upsurge in different areas of vicious crimes attributed to gangs and armed individuals; the massacres of the population; the burning of homes and displaced mass populations; the awakening of the movement Mai-Mai (local self-defense militias) for reasons not well known; the mutinies of soldiers in Uvira; the evasion of the military (deserters) in Bukavu and the defection of troops in the territory of Beni, the attack on 14 May in Bunyakiri (south Kivu), which

killed dozens of Congolese civilians and the wounding of several Pakistani “Blue Helmets” of the UN forces in Congo. “The wars in the DRC have been and are often internal and external wars of predation, as amply highlighted by different study groups” conclude the Bishops of Kivu, whose territory is rich in agricultural resources, forestry and above all mining, which are the real stakes of over 20 years of war.

AFRICA/MISSION INTENTION

“That the risen Christ may be a sign of certain hope for the men and women of the African continent” (Agenzia Fides) - Africa is “a continent of hope” par excellence. But like all human realities, it is not able to find the basis of its hope in itself. If it is true that the African Church is full of youth and vitality, it is also true that the African society has suffered terribly in recent decades due to the fratricidal struggles between various ethnic groups. It is necessary that the wounds caused by these wars are healed by divine grace, with the forgiveness offered and received sincerely. The Paschal Mystery of Christ, his death and resurrection, are proof of God’s love, love in its most radical form. This knowing we are loved makes “a hope that never disappoints” possible. Africa, which was sanctified by the physical presence of the Lord during his escape to Egypt, will be able to find in the Risen One the reason and cause of all its hopes, states Pope Benedict XVI in his encyclical Spe Salvi.

(Reprinted from XMN May 2012 because of relevance and importance.)

News from our USA Communities FRANKLIN MISSION FESTIVAL Summer sights, sounds and smells of home cooking filled the air of Xavier Knoll on the weekend of June 23-24 during our annual Mission Festival. Family activities fostered family ties in a friendly atmosphere for over one thousand attendees. A huge rummage sale/flea market opened the event on Saturday followed by games, food and live music. A traditional “spaghetti dinner” was served in the dining room at 4 PM and the celebration continued until 11. On Sunday morning we opened with an outdoor Mass accompanied by the St. Alphonsus Bell Choir Over 200 People participated. After Mass the various activities resumed, including face painting and clowns. The traditional “CHICKEN DINNER” was served from noon onward. At 7:00 PM we closed with a raffle drawing. On both days a “MISSION TENT” was open with religious and mission items and publications to help participants get acquainted with our Mission outreach in the 20 countries in which we are present and serve. The Festival is an opportunity for our extended Xaverian family to become aware that we all can be ‘Missionaries in our own homes’ and reach out to the whole world!

Fr. Mark Marangone, SX

(From top: Fr. Larry distributes Communion. Bright colors. A tea party in the shade. Attendees are all smiles as are Fr. Dominic (l.) and Fr. Mark (r.). The Bell Choir chime in. See more photos on our Flickr page: http://www.flickr.com/photos/catholicmission)

XAVERIAN “RADIO STARS” ON THE GOOD CATHOLIC LIFE IN BOSTON Summary of the show: The Xaverian Missionary Fathers serve Christ in the missions in African and Asia, as well as at the Fatima Shrine in Holliston in the Archdiocese of Boston. Hosts, Scot Landry and Fr. Chris O’Connor talked with Fr. Rocco Puopolo and Fr. Joseph Matteucig about their service in the Xaverian Missionaries in both Sierra Leone and Taiwan, as well as the initiatives they are undertaking in this country to connect American youth with their counterparts elsewhere. Listen to the show: http://www.thegoodcatholiclife.com/2012/05/01/program-0289-for-tuesday-may-1-2012-xaverian-missionaryfathers/

Fr. Rocco & Fr. Joe join host, Scot Landry, on The Good Catholic Life.

Xaverian Mission Newsletter • August 2012

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Xaverian Mission Newsletter • August 2012

These words inspired Simon Kabba Koroma to follow Christ’s call. What do they say to you? Christ has no hands: He has only our hands to do His work. Christ has no feet: He has only our feet to guide people on His path. Christ has no lips: He has only our lips to tell people about Himself. Christ has no means: He has only our help to lead people to Himself.

Xaverian seminarians in our European theology center. Simon is second from the right.

frrocco@xaviermissionaries.org 508-429-2144

Xaverian Missionaries Serve In: Bangladesh • Brazil • Burundi • Cameroon • Chad • China • Colombia • Democratic Republic of Congo • France Indonesia • Italy • Japan • Mexico • Mozambique • Philippines • Sierra Leone • Spain • Taiwan • Thailand • UK • USA

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Xaverian Mission Newsletter - 2012 July-Sept: Celebrate Africa  

Inspiring stories of the Xaverian Presence in Africa including a new church and parish dedicated to St. Guido Conforti, the founder of the...

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