Four new confreres begin their studies at the "Centro Studi Dehoniani".
On the morning of October 4, the feast of St. Francis of Assisi – patron saint of Italy and patron of the Congregation – the two-year “Dehonian Scholarship” 2021-2023 (BSD) program began. In this second edition, four SCJs will participate in the program: Fr. Emerson Marcelo Ruiz (BSP), Fr. José Gregorio González Benítez (VEN), Fr. Nilson Helmann (BRM) and Fr. Parfait-Brice Mongo (CMR).
Fr. Stefan Tertünte, director of the CSD, explained the history and objectives of the program. According to Fr. Stefan, the program has four main goals: “to introduce the students to the study of Dehonian history and charism, to form them in view of communicating the results of their research, to prepare them for a specific formative service within their entity and to participate in the various works of the CSD.” He also thanked the scholarship recipients who have been studying the official languages of the program since the beginning of the calendar year, that is, Italian and French.
The opening session was attended by the Superior General, Fr. Carlos Luiz Suárez Codorniú. He shared his joy in welcoming the new scholarship recipients and the work done by this organization: a precious service to the Congregation, to the Dehonian family, and every entity.
Father Carlos recalled some words of the sixth Superior General, Fr. Albert Bourgeois, who has always insisted on the importance of the CSD and on its mission to ensure fidelity to the Dehonian charism. The CSD, an express wish of the 1967 General Chapter and the 1969 General Conference, had a president named only in 1970, Fr. Giuseppe Manzoni. However, it was not until 1972 that the concrete work of the CSD began. Therefore, between the plans and the realization, years of uncertainty passed regarding the people involved, the purpose, and the project’s financing. So, it can be said that 2022 will mark 50 years of CSD activity.
The inauguration session concluded with a get-together in which the religious with scholarships from the previous edition of the program took part – Fr. Emmanuel Nanduri (IND), Fr. Jakub Bieszczad (POL) and Fr. Victor de Oliveira Barbosa (BSP) – and the superior of the Rome II Community, Fr. Bruno Pilati (ITS).
On our part, scholarship recipients, we are grateful for the trust that our entities, the CSD, and the General Government place in us. To dedicate ourselves exclusively to the study of Father Founder, the Dehonian charism, and the Congregation’s history is a gift that brings joy to our consecration and a particular responsibility in our mission.