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Our entry into the noviciate was done without much fanfare from the day of our arrival into Bhopal on June 21st. Soon however, preparations were afoot to ritually receive us into the Noviciate with visits to the tailor, with prayer intentions and a 4-day retreat, in which we were treated into accepting God’s love for us as we were and where we were.
Saturday, August 13th dawned, the day of our Investiture. The theme, “Come, Follow Me” beckoned us to the way of the Christian Brothers. We gathered in the Chapel sitting in a circle. The presence of God in our midst was evident in the sacred space created which housed a lighted candle, the Word of God, the Constitutions, the Chapter Booklet 2014, and a bowl of flowers representing all of Creation.
In the introduction we reflected on our own Call, and the presence of the laity (Br. Parag’s parents) and the Brothers at different stages made it more eloquent. The Word (Mk 1:16-20) brought more light into what we all are called to, to break with ‘business as usual’, the significance of ‘brothers’ and we pondered over what our response today is to the call of Jesus. And so we sang the Galilee Song, “So I leave my boats behind…”
Thereafter we received the ‘kurtas’ and ‘candles’ from our Novice Master. In background played the Song of the Candle, inviting us to light our candles. We changed into the ‘kurtas’ symbolizing the “New Wine in New Skins”.
The Logo was pinned close to our hearts and the candle was lit, and we smiled in thanksgiving by praying the Psalms. As we came to the close of the ceremony, we were conscious of our Mother looking over us throughout, and we ended with the hymn to Mary.
We are very grateful to the Orientation Group, Mr & Mrs D’Costa and the Mandal Community to be witness to this step of ours in response to the call of Jesus.
Mahendra, Vinod, Jerry