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Make of the World One Family

XAVERIAN MISSION Volume 60 — No 1 ● February 2012


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he United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) designated the second week of January as National Migration Week. Welcoming Christ in the Migrant was observed in dioceses throughout the nation. “Just as on the road to Emmaus, Christ's disciples met him in the guise of a stranger, this year's theme helps remind us that Christ makes himself present to each of us in the lonesome traveler, the newcomer, and the migrant,” said Archbishop José Gomez of Los Angeles, the chairman of the USCCB Committee on Migration. The observance of National Migration Week was begun over a quarter century ago by the US bishops to provide

Catholics an opportunity to acknowledge the wide diversity of peoples in the Church and the ministries serving them. Pope Benedict XVI expressed concern for the millions of migrants around the world, "I entrust to the Lord all those who, often forcibly, must leave their homeland, or who are stateless," the pope said at his noon blessing last Dec. 4. "While I encourage solidarity for them, I pray for all those who are doing their utmost to protect and assist these brothers and sisters in emergency situations, even if it means exposing themselves to serious hardships and dangers."

Welcoming Christ...

Xaverian Missionaries Provincial Headquarters 12 Helene Court Wayne, NJ 07470-2813 Tel.: (973) 942-2975 Fax: (973) 942-5012 Email: Xavier Knoll Mission Center 4500 Xavier Drive Franklin, WI 53132-9066 Tel.: (414) 421-0831 Fax: (414) 421-9108 Email: Global Youth Mission Services Fatima Shrine 101 Summer Street P.O. Box 5857 Holliston, MA 01746-5857 Tel.: (508) 429-2144 Fax: (508) 429-4793 Email:

Xaverian Mission Newsletter Official publication of the Xaverian Missionaries of the United States Publisher Fr. Carl Chudy,SX Editorial Team Fr. Tony Lalli, SX Fr. Joseph Matteucig, SX

Dear Xaverian Family In Traveling Together in Hope, their Pastoral Letter on Immigration, the Catholic Bishops of Wisconsin state: Over the course of two thousand years, the Catholic Church has developed a special expertise in the area of immigration. Our universal Church has observed and participated in migrations all across the globe. We have helped millions of immigrants – Catholic and non-Catholic – to prosper in new lands. We have done so and will continue to do so because we see the image and likeness of God in every human being. From the Prophets to recent papal teaching, the Church has a consistent message: “Welcome the stranger.” (Mt 25:35). As missionaries we are the “strangers” in foreign lands who are welcomed into the homes and hearts of the people there. Here at home we recognize that Catholics, all in good conscience, hold differing views about immigration reform. We also know that many are dissatisfied with the status quo and are looking for a workable solution. Our Catholic teaching provides important principles to guide us.

Pope Benedict XVI proclaimed the theme for the 98th World Day of Migrants and Refugees celebrated on January 15, 2012: “Migration and the New Evangelization.” In his message the pope said the present time calls upon the Church to intensify its missionary activity both in the regions where the Gospel is proclaimed for the first time and in countries with a Christian tradition. “Proclaiming Jesus Christ the one Savior of the world ‘constitutes the essential mission of the Church’…Today we feel the urgent need to give a fresh impetus and new approaches to the work of evangelization in a world in which the breaking down of frontiers and the new processes of globalization are bringing individuals and peoples even closer.” catholicmissionaries

We can only echo: “Amen!” In Christ, through the intercession of St. Guido Conforti,

Editor Mary Aktay Printing AlphaGraphics, Totowa, NJ Email & Web: www,

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Xaverian Mission Newsletter ▪ February 2012

Xaverian Missionaries in the World

Building the Living Church


he mission entrusted to the Xaverians continues to bear fruit. It is a great joy and challenge ministering the Philippines.

I have been present in this country since 1994 in different stages of my life. First I was a student of Theology who also shared time in St. Francis Xavier Parish, working with choirs and children. After my ordination I was assigned to Vocation ministry. Then I was asked to serve in the Conforti Formation House. All these years were full of joys and challenges indeed. At present I am one of the confreres who form the Pastoral Team of the new parish we accepted. This parish is consecrated to Our Lady of Guadalupe. Most Rev. Gabriel V. Reyes, D.D. Bishop of Antipolo opened the parish and installed me as its first parish priest on May 9, 2009. It was a great moment of joy. The parish began its mission with a lot of vigor and enthusiasm. We immediately worked with six communities and around 300 people committed themselves as lectors, altar servers, choirs, and parish leaders. They walked from the different corners of the parish to receive biblical, liturgical and musical formations. Our enthusiasm was challenged by the flood of Typhoon Ondoy on September 26, 2009, just four months after the inauguration of the parish. The water affected the entire parish destroying houses and property. It was a total desolation after the flood. As parish priest I tried to reach the different chapels and the houses of our leaders but it was impossible due to the damage caused by the typhoon. At one moment I did not know where I was so I decided to go back to the main chapel and clean it. I knew this would become the center to accept goods and distribute them: I was right. By the grace of God we survived the flood and the reconstruction period. Building our Parish Church would be a great help. We are working with some small chapels where the sacraments are celebrated. We also rent two houses, one used as the house of the priest and the second as the Parish Office. We are planning to buy a lot where we can build our parish center and the church for the proclamation of the gospel. We are already working in nine communities and ready to open the tenth which will be named after our founder “St. Guido Ma. Conforti Community.” The number of people ministering our parish is also increasing; I believe they are around five hundred lay people working in our parish. We have no money, but we have faith. We have no gold or physical building, but we have hope and unity. After all, we are building the living church. This is really a hard task but we know that the mission is not ours. God, in His own ways, will continue supporting us and leading us to the green pastures of His promised land.

Fr. Javier Mexicano Ferrer, SX (Editor’s note: Yet another typhoon devastated the Philippines in December 2011.)

Xaverian Mission Newsletter ▪ February 2012


Xaverian Missionaries in the World

“Jesus washed the feet of His disciples as a sign of love. I will try to keep this example of love in mind every day and follow it.”

Across Borders and Oceans — God’s Word Knows No Boundaries Ordination of Fr. Lucas Marandi, SX called “a milestone.”


here was great celebration in the diocese of Dinajpur diocese, a district in Northern Bangladesh, when the first indigenous Santal Catholic, Lucas Marandi, 36, was ordained a Xaverian missionary priest on September 9, 2011 by Holy Cross Bishop Moses M. Costa in the Sacred Heart of Jesus Church in Khalippur. Father Marandi’s mission ministry will be in Brazil. Fr. Marandi commented on his vocation: “Jesus washed the feet of His disciples as a sign of love. I will try to keep this example of love in mind every day and follow it.”

The ordination represented a milestone after a century of Catholicism in the area. It was a historic event for the Santal community. Foreign missioners evangelized and served the indigenous people for hundreds of years. They encouraged diocesan vocations to strengthen the local Church. Now with a strong faith and commitment to spreading the Gospel, the torch has been passed. The Word of God is now proclaimed through the hands and hearts of those evangelized, just as has been from the beginning of Christianity. St. Guido’s assertion to “Make of the world one family!” has been embraced by Fr. Lucas Marandi, SX in Bangladesh. Now he will take the message to Brazil.

Editor’s note: Fr. Marandi is now in San Paulo, Brazil where he is working on the study of language and culture.

The power to make the world a better place is in your hands. Help spread the Gospel with a click! Share in the Global Mission of the Church and the legacy of Saint Guido Conforti. Visit: We now accept PayPal and credit card donations online.


Xaverian Mission Newsletter ▪ February 2012

Xaverian Missionaries In the US

Where Are You From? “Go and preach the brotherhood proclaimed by Christ, which is destined to demolish all barriers and make a single family of all peoples.” St. Guido M. Conforti to departing Missionaries, 1924


n Mission Sunday, October 23, 2011, Guido M. Conforti, Bishop of Parma, Italy, and Founder of the Xaverian Missionaries, was declared a Saint by Pope Benedict XVI. St. Peter’s Square was overflowing with thousands of people from all over the world, including some 50 of us from the States. Xaverian Missionaries and friends had celebrations in honor of St. Guido. Mass was presided by Bishop George Biguzzi, SX, of Makeni, Sierra Leone at the Basilica of St. Paul Outside the Wall. We rejoiced at the Cathedral of Parma where St. Guido had been bishop. All the celebrations were moving, exhilarating and multicultural. In just one occasion I counted 12 languages spoken in prayer and music. The experience was overwhelming. Meeting each other, we asked: “Where are you from?” Understandable in such circumstances. Yet, connected with the words of St. Guido, “to make of the world one family,” the question hit me with unusual force as it brought to mind that same remark in the Gospel. It was a harassing scene. Jesus had been arrested and brought before judges. Outside in the dark it was very cold. People were sitting around fires with their hands outstretched toward the fleeting warmth of the flames. A wary maid pointed to Peter and said: “Your accent betrays you. Where are you from?” She tried to classify him by his land, his tribe, and his nation. Peter denied knowing Jesus. He denied the truth. Peter should have denied that he could be classified any longer as a Galilean, belonging to one group, to one land, one nation because he was now a follower of Jesus. That is what Jesus means when He says: “ Call no one on earth your father; you have but one Father in heaven.” Do not be classified by descent, blood, land, tribe, or nation. Those divisions are gone. From now on, it is all of us: one descent, one blood, one land, one people, and one nation. “Only one is your Father, the one in heaven!” The question is still asked of you and me: “Your accent betrays you. Where are you from?” The answer Jesus gave is for all of us: “Only one is your Father, the one in heaven!” You belong together; you are brothers and sisters.

Only when this answer is given to that treacherous question will we be at home together on earth. Only this answer can break the dark night in which we are still sitting with our hands outstretched in the fleeting warmth of a fire. Oh, the world tries to fool us. It tells us we belong to a global village. Though we are connected in many ways – by satellites, telephones, internet, radio, television – we remain strangers, often divided against each other. People sitting in a bus, train, or plane do not relate to each other just because they are using the same kind of transport. Being aware that we are flying the same spaceship, called earth, is not much help either.

From top: Fr. Tony Lalli with his friends, Joan Bowen and Elizabeth Bowen Wall at the Rome airport. (photo: M. Marraffino) Fr. Tony with Fr. Alfiero Ceresoli, SX, miracle recipient Thiago Joào and his parents in Parma. (photo: M. Aktay) Xaverian USA Province pilgrims in front of the Pope’s summer residence. (photo: M. Marraffino)

Jesus gives us a reason to relate to each other: It is our common divine origin. “You have only one Father, and he is in heaven.” We have one parent; one origin. We are one family. Get an atlas and take a good look at the world. Get acquainted with the family you have and the earth where we live together. Look at the trails and the achievements of our human family in that spirit Jesus introduced to you, and you’ll conclude, as St. Guido did: Yes, we are called “to make of the world one family.” St. Guido leads us to aspire and labor toward that end: we are one family, and God is our one Father.

Fr. Tony Lalli SX Xaverian Mission Newsletter ▪ February 2012






n Sunday, December 11, 2011 we celebrated a solemn mass of thanksgiving for the canonization of St. Guido Conforti, founder of the Xaverian Missionaries. The mass was held at St. Bridget's Parish in Framingham, Massachusetts where Msgr. Strahan is pastor. Cardinal Sean O'Malley presided. Bishop McManus of the Diocese of Worcester, MA, concelebrated along with Xaverian Missionaries from the US Province and fellow priests from the

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Archdiocese of Boston and Diocese of Worchester. After the multilingual liturgy, about 250 friends gathered for a meal of thanksgiving. We are grateful to all who have made this celebration possible. Thanks too to Mr. Mike Marraffino for the photos. May this happy occasion be a way to deepen and enliven the global mission of the church. Fr. Carl Chudy SX

Global Mission Spirituality

Africa: “Salt of the Earth” & “Spiritual Lung” for Humanity

A precious treasure is to be found in the soul of Africa, where I perceive a “spiritual ‘lung’ for a humanity that appears to be in a crisis of faith and hope,”


ope Benedict XVI traveled to Benin, Africa in November on a very symbolic and important journey for the Church of Africa, and for us all. Benedict XVI’s visit to Benin and the apostolic exhortation, Africae Munus (Treasure of Africa), which he signed in Ouidah make an important contribution to world coexistence and offer real support for the Catholic Church’s commitment. A commitment which is not foreign to the continent that provided exile to the Holy Family fleeing persecution and where Christianity has very ancient roots. A history which the Pope underscored several times, recalling the importance of the school of Alexandria, evoking the ancient African Christian writers in Latin and especially repeating, again to journalists on the airplane to Cotonou, that in the 21st century the announcement of the Gospel on the continent should not seem like a difficult and European system, but be expressed in a universal message, at once simple and profound, “that God knows us and loves us and that concrete religion provokes collaboration and fraternity.” Why couldn’t an African country show the way to the rest of the world? Benedict XVI left Benin with a question which involves more than just that continent which he visited for the second time in less than three years. Clarifying that it is a way of living in authentic fraternity, founded on the family and work, the Pope’s final speech in Benin served to strongly encourage Africa and admonish those who continue to exploit it through ill-concealed forms of neocolonialism. Fr. Carl Chudy SX


ith this document I wish to make available the encouraging fruits proposed by the Synod, and I invite all people of good will to look to Africa with faith and love, to help it become – through Christ and through the Holy Spirit – the light of the world and the salt of the earth (cf. Mt 5:13-14). A precious treasure is to be found in the soul of Africa, where I perceive a “spiritual ‘lung’ for a humanity that appears to be in a crisis of faith and hope,” on account of the extraordinary human and spiritual riches of its children, its variegated cultures, its soil and sub-soil of abundant resources. However, if it is to stand erect with dignity, Africa needs to hear the voice of Christ who today proclaims love of neighbor, love even of one’s enemies, to the point of laying down one’s life: the voice of Christ who prays today for the unity and communion of all people in God. (cf. Jn 17:20-21).


Xaverian Mission Newsletter ▪ February 2012

The Missionary Dimension of the Priestly Vocation

Witnesses of God: Missionary Priests & Consecrated Religious


he Pontifical Missionary Union of Priests and Religious celebrated a prayer vigil for the Day of Missionary Priests and consecrated Religious on December 3, the day the Church commemorates St. Francis Xavier, patron saint of the missions. The theme chosen is the same as the missionary intention of the month of October last year: "Witnesses of God." The recent canonization of Guido Maria Conforti, co-founder and first president of the Pontifical Missionary Union of Clergy, offers us an opportunity to reflect on the missionary dimension of the priestly vocation. Saint Guido Maria Conforti was priest and bishop not only to his diocese, but to all the world. Bishop Conforti's concern for the Church entrusted to him never distracted him from the “concern for those parts of the world where the Word of God had not yet been proclaimed.” He was convinced that the proclamation of the Gospel “ad gentes” (to the nations), was the most effective way of reevangelizing his own people. He was untiring, therefore, in his commitment to mission evangelization and promotion, both through the work of his own missionary family, as well as supporting every missionary animation initiative in Italy and throughout the world.

The Bishop of Parma was almost like a magnet to those who felt the urgency of missionary formation of the people of God. The missionary heart of Fr. Manna had the intuition that only through the personal conversion of priests and bishops to the universal mission of the church could he hope for a missionary re-launching. Bishop Conforti joined wholeheartedly the Missionary Union of the Clergy. “It was providential that Fr. Paolo Manna had the support of the holy Bishop Conforti at the time of the foundation of the Missionary Union of the Clergy. Conforti not only offered valuable advice and help to the Union in its infancy stages; he also used his authority to ensure that it gained papal approval.” (Pope Paul VI) Fr. Alfredo Turco SX


Above: Pontifical Delegate Cardinal Tosi visits the Xaverian Institute with Bishop Conforti. Below: Diocesan and Religious Priests join Xaverians for the Canonization Thanksgiving Mass in Framingham, MA. (photo: M. Marraffino)

He was particularly committed to assisting in the foundation and spreading of the Pontifical Missionary Union of the Clergy. In fact, in 1916 Guido Conforti got together with Fr. Paolo Manna of the Pontifical Institute of Milan Missionary Society. The idea was to mobilize priests around the world to reawaken their awareness of having been ordained for the whole world and encourage them to heighten their people's commitment to spreading the Gospel. It was to be another legacy to the mission of the Church.

Xaverian Mission Newsletter ▪ February 2012


World Mission News Digest

World Mission News Digest brates his silver jubilee, becoming Bishop Emeritus – hands this church over to the clergy of Makeni and Sierra Leone. Now that peace has returned after the horrible 10 year civil war, Bishop Biguzzi hands over to the people of Sierra Leone a rather adult Church.



Birth and development of the African Church, which celebrates 50 years: the diocese of Makeni Makeni (Agenzia Fides) – In 1950 four Xaverian priests landed in the port of Freetown and given the missions of Lunsar and Makeni. The "Northern Province" became the foundation of a new African Church. The group was led by Father Augusto Fermo Azzolini (1908-1992). In 1962 Makeni was elevated to a Diocese, with Msgr. Azzolini consecrated its first Bishop. He remained at the helm for 25 years and was succeeded by Mgr. George Biguzzi, also a Xaverian missionary. Bishop Biguzzi headed the diocese for 25 years, until January 7, 2012, when the new African Bishop Aruna Henry, of the Diocese of Kenema was elected. Now, after 50 years of apostolic work, thanks in large part to Bishop Biguzzi, the local clergy can see to the requirements of this diocese. Bishop Biguzzi – who cele-


More prayer, reflection and action in the new year after 150 years of evangelization Taiwan (Agenzia Fides) In an editorial entitled "Let’s move forward in 2012," the weekly Catholic bulletin of the Archdiocese of Taipei invites the faithful to pray, reflect and act more in the new year, because "The Church may always be the light and salt, so that all may change in the light that leads to Christ." The text reads: Thanks to the new strength and missionary zeal resulted from the celebration of the 150 years of evangelization in Taiwan, and the example of great Cardinal Paul Shan, we felt full of the Lord’s grace. So we have

Xaverian Mission Newsletter ▪ February 2012

the trump card to go forward with confidence. But we must pray more, to renew our lives and daily work… We must do more for democracy, we must act according to truth and justice of God, allowing the construction of a more just and fraternal society.

do not attend school because their parents have to pay school fees and approximately 90% of schools are private! …The Catholic Church is not discouraged, however, and continues to work in favor of the smaller and poorer.”



The Catholic Church is not Discouraged

Sad record for the city of Oaxaca: 1500 children die every year.

Port au Prince (Agenzia Fides) - The Apostolic Nuncio, Mgr. Bernardito Auza, describes the situation in Haiti two years after the devastating earthquake: "The reconstruction in Haiti is particularly difficult and expensive because everything is imported, even the sand. ...There are still about 600,000 people in tents,

including seminarians. The Church has dozens of reconstruction projects. We must consider funding and priorities. Meanwhile, the serious problems of Haiti, which existed before the earthquake, persist: firstly, the material and social poverty. Many children

Oaxaca (Agenzia Fides) According to World Health Organization the main causes of childhood death each year are due to infections and accidents. The leading cause among children aged 5 to 14 is road accidents, while children between 1 and 5 die mainly from infectious intestinal disease. In the city of Oaxaca in 2011, 1500 children died. The most vulnerable group includes small children and elderly people who fall ill mainly due to bacteria, viruses or parasites that enter the body through contaminated food and water.

From our USA Communities

News from our USA Communities A Tribute to Father Alfredo From His Franklin Community and Friends


. Alfredo Turco SX came to Xavier Knoll, Franklin, WI directly after his ordination on September 25, 1988. He has such a wonderful personality that people naturally gravitate toward him. He raised significant funds for the Xaverians, simply on the strength of that personality and his ability to develop contacts by relating to people on so many levels. Moreover, he saved substantial amounts of money by being able to do so many things by himself. For our annual mission banquet, for example, he would format the tickets and letterheads, as well as develop the center photo collage and layout the ads for the banquet booklet. All of his computer skills have been self-taught. He loves to learn and try new things. He is extremely talented in many, many areas. He can do everything from fixing the plumbing to setting up and updating our website. He is also an accomplished musician — both keyboards and stringed instruments — and he possesses a lovely baritone voice. It seemed he, like the Energizer bunny, never stopped working in one way or another when he was here. He is extremely selfless. He was also the first to visit people he knew in the hospital or in nursing homes — whether for rehab or permanently. He will push himself to an extreme to help someone in need. Many parishes began to call us for ministry help-out over the past years because he has a very special way of relating to other priests, whether they are diocesan or another religious order. He often took four or more Masses and/or confessions on the weekends when parishes in the area (or even parishes an hour or more away) asked for help, and the other Fathers were already scheduled. In addition, several high schools in the area would call to have him, specifically, celebrate Mass on holy days — because he has such a special way of relating to young people. He was also the Chaplain for the South Milwaukee Council of the Knights of Columbus, as well as their Ladies' Auxiliary, and, we were told all of those folks would walk barefoot on hot coals for him. A number of very emotional phone calls and messages were received after it was announced that Fr. Alfredo had been reassigned! We will all miss his sense of humor and goofy laugh. We will remember most the fact that he was ALWAYS there — for all of us, for our families, for friends, even for strangers — for anyone who asked. That's just the kind of guy he is.

From Top: Fr. Alfredo at the 2011 Mission Banquet in Franklin, with Thiago João in Parma, and the 2011 Mission Festival in Franklin.

Xaverian Mission Newsletter ▪ February 2012


Xaverian Mission Newsletter â–Ş February 2012

Christ has no body but yours; no hands, no feet on earth but yours. Yours are the eyes with which He looks compassion on this world. Yours are the feet with which He walks to do good. Yours are the hands with which He blesses all the world. St. Teresa of Avila

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Xaverian Mission Newsletter - 2012 Jan-Mar: Welcoming Christ in the Migrant  

“Just as on the road to Emmaus, Christ's disciples met him in the guise of a stranger, Christ makes himself present to each of us in the lon...