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23rd June 2017
Vol 2 Issue 12

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CHRISTIAN BROTHERS
OCEANIA PROVINCE
NEWSLETTER
           
 
CBC FREMANTLE IMMERSION
 
 

CBC Fremantle Immersion Experience in Lima, 2017             Video created by Elser Llanos on Jun 1, 2017

 

Old boys from CBC Fremantle spent a few days in Lima in an immersion experience. They built a prefab house for a family living in extreme poverty conditions and helped build a concrete house in Jicamarca.

     
   
      
 
Br FRANK IN TIMOR LESTE
 
  TimorLesteCel
  The Edmund Rice Day (5th) celebrations at Railaco Leten on a windswept morning began with mass (Fr Bong) at 7.00am, followed by a presentation of multiple TAIS to the Brs, a procession to the large cemetery cross to lay wreaths in memory of Br Dan Courtney & then the fiesta.

The many speeches had the people hanging out for a feed. Each of the 5 villages was represented – some began to walk at 3.00am. The memorable ERD concluded around 11.30am. Special thanks to Delfina & her team for their preparation for the celebration.

     
   
     
 
EDMUND RICE COMMUNITY & REFUGEE SERVICES
 
 

ERCRSFootball

INTER-SCHOOL SOCCER

Another inter-school friendly soccer match was recently organised for the Brighter Tomorrow Boys group; this time against St Patrick’s College in Ballarat. The enthusiastic St Pat’s boys ventured down to Sunshine North Soccer Club, which was generously offered to us by club management for the game.

     
   
      
 
THE BROTHERS IN BROOME
 
 

BroomCentaCare

 Our Work:

Centacare was a very busy place in May with over 250 clients accessing our services. I hesitate to suggest that the tourist season, which is now upon us, is making life even more difficult for some of our clients. There are still an unacceptable number who seem to be living rough.

A term we give those who do not have their own home and spend much of their time moving from one place to another, for example staying with relatives or friends until they wear out their welcome. When this happens they can be seen camping in the surrounding bush – not a good look.

     
   
     
 
NEWS OF AFRICAN BROTHERS IN ROME
 
 

AfricanBrothersInRome

Martin Binyenya has arrived in Rome to pursue his studies at the Institute of Psychology of the Gregorian University. Before the course starts Martin will sharpen his knowledge and mastery of the Italian language, which will be the mode of learning the course.

Amandi Mboya has just completed six months training at the same University earning a Diploma in Safeguarding of Minors. We welcome Amandi back to the District, and we look forward to his contribution towards increasing our capacity to keep the minors safe in our various ministries in the District and indeed the wider Province.

Br George Massay

     
 
 NEWS FROM AMERICA
 
  BishopHenderson

When it was founded last year, Bishop Hendricken’s SABER group committed itself to advocating for others, particularly those who are marginalized in our society. It was evident early on that a group that fit this description in their home state of Rhode Island were veterans of the armed forces.

Throughout the 2016-2017 school year, student members of SABER have helped to organize and promote a number of different events to bring Awareness to and support the needs of veterans. In November, 2016, Bishop Hendricken teacher Bill Johnston organized a free pancake breakfast for veterans. The breakfast was organized to show support for veterans and to thank them for their service to our nation. The school collected donations at the event, which were used to send care packages to Hendricken alumni currently deployed overseas, as well as members of the National Guard.
   
     
 
EDMUND RICE SCHOOLS IN AMERICA
 
 

THE MEN INSIDE FIGHTING HUNGER AT CURLEY

  For the third year, through the novels of Steinbeck, the Palma School has collaborated with inmates at the CDCR facility in Soledad. Spearheaded at Palma by Director of Campus Ministry Jim Michele and Mrs. Mia Mirassou, the program has touched the lives of inmates in the prison’s Life C.Y.C.L.E. program in profound ways.

It’s more than exploring the themes in John Steinbeck’s novels. It is a connection to a community that gives the men inside hope.

They find themselves in an unfamiliar world where people care about their opinions and take an interest in them as men.

Roger Rybkowski, The Palma School

     
   
     
 
ULURU STATEMENT FROM THE HEART
 
 

A SIGNIFICANT MESSAGE FOR ALL WHO SUPPORT SOCIAL JUSTICE

50 years ago my parents were subject to discrimination unimaginable today – living under a system of permits and with racism a feature of their daily lives. The 1967 referendum opened a new door for our people.
Last week 250 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander delegates held an historic meeting at Uluru and adopted a compelling “Statement from the Heart”.

This meeting was convened by the Referendum Council. It was the culmination of the First Nations Dialogues, one of the last stages in their process.

MARK YETTICA-PAULSON
Joint Campaign Director, RECOGNISE

     
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Br FRANK IN TIMOR LESTE (Continued)
 
 

I was coerced to visit a Gov’t approved private senior high school (2nd) in the town of Ermera – built & paid for by families – I was impressed. Pedro, a lecturer at the Coffee Institute in Gleno, invited me & of course they had a list of ‘urgent’ needs. I agreed to supply some English Language study books.

We were pleased to have our long time friend Alex Johnson (8th-11th) with us at Railaco Crick. He visited friends in the village & had a rest before returning to OZ. Sally Foreman, former volunteer with Comundade Edmund Rice (CER), now working in Dili at an NGO with families in domestic violence. They are planning a tourist company here in Timor Leste.

The Railaco Leten community requested a meeting (8th) with CER to flesh out the details of the proposed Community Centre building development. Victor, the Xefe, led a large contingent of men discussing the details – floor space 14m x 8m. Peter & I contributed & listened through Norberto as Interpreter. It’s a goer.

Saturday (20th) marked the 15th anniversary of the Restoration of Independence. It was celebrated in a special way with the inauguration of the newly elected President of Timor Leste – Francisco “Lu Olo” Gueteres. Certainly the Timorese display their pride in their country with the quad colours of their flags & banners flying from buildings, homes, motor bikes, cars & trucks.
For those who know Flori – he’s in Mildura, Vic for 6 months on a work visa, picking fruit - see his facebook.

I was pleased to be invited to the graduation ceremony (25th) for the 360 students at the East Timor Coffee Institute in Gleno at 9.00am. We had 5 being honoured on the day. 1 Xefe, 2 former Xefe’s & 2 scholarship young people. Congratulats to Graciano, Caralito, Domingas, Antonia & Ananias. The scene was electric – huge decorations, band playing, commentators telling stories to the bumper crowd. Unfortunately it turned sour for me (& others). The Minister of Education came nearly 4 hours late!!! The patience of the crowd waiting in the hot sun & then they welcomed him with an ovation - was amazing. Consequently I pulled up stumps at 4.00pm (the show went on) to dash back to Dili to the local pub for the PA v GC encounter with Barry - success.

On the (30th) the Health Department in conjunction with the village Xefe’s promoted an education program & distribution of mosquito nets for the families – a great initiative. On the same day a signing up day for people to work on the restoration of the road running from the bottom of the hill at Motahare right through to Soloi.

Br Frank Hennessy

     
      
     
 
 ERCRS INTER-SCHOOL SOCCER (Continued)
 
 

The excited CRC boys delighted in a 2-0 win, which boosted their spirits enormously. Future plans were made between the two schools to begin a regular soccer schedule, with the Brighter Tomorrow boys due to travel to Ballarat in June for the next game.

The inter-school soccer matches have proved to be a bonding experience for all schools involved, with the universal enjoyment of sport successfully breaking down barriers of all kinds.

We look forward to facilitating more sporting opportunities in the year ahead for the boys, which will no doubt open many more doors, build confidence, and further strengthen community ties.

Gudrun Philipp

     
   
     
 
 THE BROTHERS IN BROOME (Continued)
 
 

We still provide breakfast each morning on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays for people such as these and I assure you we do get quite a large crowd on any one day. Fortunately, we have three very reliable volunteers to help us out.

Berkeley is also very busy working at home creating websites or tidying up others. He and I put together the Centacare’s website for example, and you can click on the Centacare link to see an example of his handiwork. http://centacarekimberley.org.au/ As a matter of fact he is now putting the finishing touches on a website for Br. Pat Mohen which is worth viewing when completed, as Pat was responsible for quite a large body of work. Berkeley has also created a site for Br. Nick Bilich, who was a teacher, builder, architect and painter and needless to say it is also worth a visit.

In the next few days Berkeley is also off by road to visit the Gibb River Catholic Primary School, some 600km from Broome, to help them with their computer setup. (Not bad for an 80+ year old) One final bit of news concerning websites and that is we have set up a free website. https://pthrupp.wordpress.com/ .This free website is of its nature small and just in the experimental stage at this point in time - but enough on websites for now.

Broome:

Broome’s population, during this tourist season, is steadily growing and by the end of the month of June we expect the population to have doubled. In the last few weeks we were visited by several cruise ships, and I suppose there are others to follow. The good news is that the travellers bring millions of dollars to the Broome economy, so I’m told. The traffic starts to become more like what Perth experiences every day (maybe not that bad) and the shopping lines start to increase in length.

The Grey Nomads become a healthy part of the tourist population, and it’s a delight to see Grandchildren tagging along. Many of our tourists fly in to get away from the southern winter and happily fill our local resorts. As you might expect it is quite exciting to see so many people watching the sunsets on Cable Beach each evening.

Now to top off everything yesterday the circus has hit town, so as you can imagine it’s starting to get quite hectic up here. The latest news getting us all excited is that our local council, in partnership with the state government, are going to seal the Cape Leveque road which means travelling to places such as Beagle Bay will no longer be a nightmare. (There remains 90 km to be done)

Br Peter Thrupp

     
   
     
 
 NEWS FROM AMERICA (Continued)
 
 

BishopHenderson2

In April of 2017, in support of Operation Stand Down Rhode Island (OSDRI), an organization that works to help “veterans secure stable housing and employment as well as other assistance,” the Hendricken SABER group organized a food collection to support veterans in need. In addition to collecting items and money for veterans, the SABER group works to raise awareness of various issues surrounding veterans, through the use of their Facebook page.

OPERATION STAND DOWN RI Bishop Hendricken sophomore Damon Castigliego partnered with Hendricken’s SABER group to collect more than 26 boxes of food for local veterans.

Bishop Hendricken sophomore Damon Castigliego partnered with Hendricken’s SABER group to collect more than 26 boxes of food for local veterans.

     
   
   
 
  SCHOOLS IN AMERICA (Continued)
 
 

Students, parents and faculty members who partcipate in the program make the inmates feel valued, just by being present and engaging in the conversations.

Hope turns to inspira9on for most in the program and prison officials verify that this interaction has had posi9ve repercussions among the population. Inmates must earn their way into the Life C.Y.C.L.E. program and each spot is now coveted. Many of the participants feel compelled to write Mr. MicheleJ. Some of their comments follow.

Through campus ministry, the Palma community continues to make a difference in the lives of many in the Salinas Valley and Central Coast. These programs are borne of and embody the true essence of an Edmund Rice Christian Brothers education.

“A guy that went to board the day after me went home last Friday. I thoughtthat could have been me, then I thought if it was me, I wouldn’t have been able to participate in the next Palma event... I know that me being here is a part of God’s plan. If I continue to look at every event in my life as a gift from God and his purpose, no matter what is going on, it brings joy, peace and community. God is good.”

“I myself have been incarcerated for 26 years, since the age of 18, and have never come across a person who is more committed to the betterment of humanity and flat out willing to go that extra mile to invest in people and allow them to see their own potential. I have many

successful and inspiring stories/testimonies where Mr. Michele has had a direct impact on the men/Life C.Y.C.L.E. program. Mr. Michele has added value to well over 100 men inside these walls by just being himself and being the perfect example of humility and being of service and in service to others. I personally have been impacted by Mr.Michele from his approach to inspire us not only to change but to strive for transformation and live a life of service and to reach our highest potential.”

“On February 2nd, it was 25 years in prison for me, and it was also the day my oldest sister passed away. She had never been able to come visit me. For me and for many others, that is why they /me we spend with you and those brave young men has been so precious and valuable.”

“When I see the faith that you guys still have in us I’m filled with emotion and love and it strengthens me to not give up and continue in my self-help. I just want to say sorry for at one /me in my life when I lived recklessly, causing so much pain and making this world a worse place. Thank you for your grace,mercy and compassion.”

“This was a wonderful experience for me to interact with society,sharing, reading the book Of Mice and Men. I learned a lot and will carry those lessons with me for life. The kids were smart and I had no problem learning from them. Their speech was honest and they were

innocent. I just felt like showing them that not all people in prison are hopelessly lost.”

Roger Rybkowski, The Palma School

     
   
     
 
ULURU STATEMENT FROM THE HEART (Continued)
 
  The Uluru Statement called for:
  • Constitutional reforms to “empower our people and take a rightful place in our own country”.
  • The establishment of a First Nations Voice enshrined in the Constitution.
  • A Makarrata Commission "to supervise a process of agreement-making between governments and First Nations and truth-telling about our history".

The Uluru statement has allowed Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander voices to be heard by the nation. It raises issues my people, including my family, have been talking about and progressing for decades – like treaty and agreement-making and truth-telling.

It also calls for a voice in the affairs of the nation – what advocates have called substantive recognition in the Constitution.

The Uluru Statement builds on decades of work including the 1995 Recognition, Rights and Reform report by ATSIC and more recently the 2012 Expert Panel and the 2015 Parliamentary Joint Select Committee reports.

All of this work has canvassed recognition in the Constitution – from symbolic to substantive – and for dealing with racially discriminatory clauses.

The work of Recognise has always been to raise awareness of these principles and prepare the nation for a successful referendum – the only way to change the Australian Constitution. That work will continue.

While we have remained neutral on the model needed to achieve change, we have provided information on all of the options on the table. We will continue to do so, while the nation awaits the final report of the Referendum Council and a response from the Parliament.

Great change requires great patience and tenacity. I look forward to working with you as our nation moves another step closer to this historic change.

Mark Yettica Paulson

READ THE FULL STATEMENT