Consecrated Life celebrated in the Archdiocese of Madang
Bp Steve Reichert
In 1997, Pope St. John Paul II celebrated the first World Day of Consecrated Life, which he himself had instituted to take place every year on February 2nd, the feast of the Presentation of Jesus in the Temple.
The Saint wanted "to praise the Lord more solemnly and to thank him for the great gift of consecrated life, which enriches and gladdens the Christian Community by the multiplicity of its charisms and by the edifying fruits of so many lives totally given to the cause of the Kingdom.
"This day," he went on to say, "is intended to promote a knowledge of and esteem for the consecrated life by the entire people of God." He ended by saying, "They (members of religious communities) are invited to celebrate together solemnly the marvels which the Lord has accomplished in them, to discover by a more illumined faith the rays of divine beauty spread by the Spirit in their way of life, and to acquire a more vivid consciousness of their irreplaceable mission in the Church and in the world."
This year the World Day of Consecrated Life was celebrated in the Archdiocese of Madang at the Cathedral, where religious and laity began the day with a period of recollection following a spiritual talk by Fr. John Ryan SVD, the chaplain of Divine Word University.
Later in the morning the Eucharist was presided over by the Archbishop. We all then had lunch together, after which various items of entertainment were presented. Local young people, along with many younger sisters, provided enjoyable dances and songs.
After lunch served in the "Open Church", an open air hall beside the cathedral, various people showed off their talent to the assembled crowd, religious, laity and diocesan priests. One of these pictures shows Fr. Solomon and Fr. Bonny playing guitars and singing a song about Archangel Michael, which was composed by Fr. Solomon.
We all enjoyed the afternoon program on the World Day of Consecrated Life in Madang.