• Wartakanlah Injil kepada segala makhluk.
    Mrk 16:15

  • 你们往普天下去, 向一切受造物宣传福音
    谷 16:15

  • Everything is possible by the power of the Holy Spirit’s Grace.
    St Arnold Janssen

  • Segala sesuatu menjadi mungkin dalam kekuatan karunia Roh Kudus.
    St. Arnold Janssen

  • 我当传教士不是为主牺牲,而是上主给我的最大恩赐

  • Với sức mạnh Ân Huệ của Chúa Thánh Thần, Mọi việc đều có thể được.
    St Arnoldus Janssen

  • Preach the Gospel to the whole creation./Anh em hãy đi khắp tứ phương thiên hạ, loan báo Tin Mừng cho mọi loài thọ tạo
    Mk 16:15

  • There are many different gifts, but it is always the same Spirit.
    1 Cor 12:4

  • And the Word became flesh and lived among us.
    Jn 1:14

  • Let the word of Christ, in all its richness, find a home with you.
    Col 3:16

  • To proclaim the Good News is the first and greatest act of love of neighbour.
    St Arnold Janssen

  • 传扬天国福音是第一且最大的爱近人行动

  • Có nhiều đặc sủng khác nhau, nhưng chỉ có một Thần Khí/
    1 Cor. 14:4

  • 圣言成了血肉,寄居在我们中间
    若 1:14

  • Ada rupa-rupa karunia, tetapi Roh satu
    1 Kor 12:4

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Thursday, 30 August 2018 18:58

SVD life is ‘an extraordinary experience of brotherhood’


Marius Razafimandimby SVD 350Born in a small town in Madagascar, Marius Razafimandimby could not have imagined in his childhood that he would one day be living in Australia and completing his final studies towards becoming a Divine Word Missionaries (SVD) priest.

But, he says that coming across the world to complete his formation at the SVD formation house, Dorish Maru College in Melbourne has broadened his horizons.
“Missionary life is a widening of everyone’s horizon,” he says.

Born the fourth of five siblings, Marius’ parents were both teachers in Catholic schools and he says his parents and his Catholic education had a big influence on his decision to become a missionary.

However, after leaving school, Marius ended up becoming a Physical Education teacher and teaching for two years before coming to a cross-roads and asking himself: “Is this what I want to do for my whole life?”

During a school holiday, the first Madagascar SVD missionary celebrated Mass in Marius’ home town and invited young men to join the SVD.
“I responded, and went up to talk to him,” Marius says.

After a few delays, Marius joined the SVD in 2010 and during his first year, he taught at a SVD primary school in a remote area, and was then admitted to the Postulancy to study Philosophy, followed by one year of Novitiate in Ghana. After professing his first vows in 2016 he was sent to Australia to study Theology.

Apart from his studies, Marius takes part in pastoral activities every Tuesday at a pastoral outreach centre in Melbourne.

He says he is enjoying his formation, especially the multicultural nature of the Divine Word Missionaries.“SVD formation is challenging, but more than the challenges are the learnings and rewards,” he says.

“My several years of experience with the SVD community taught me how different people from different countries can live together. It also taught me humility, that we are all equal.

“I have a wonderful time living with the different seminarians and missionaries coming from different countries. It is an extraordinary experience of brotherhood.”


“I feel happy and fulfilled in following God’s call”  

Editorial pic Francois dAssise SVD 350Growing up in Madagascar in a community that could only celebrate Mass once every three months because of a shortage of priests, Andrianihantana Francois d’Assise felt the initial stirrings of a call to the priesthood.

It wasn’t until high school, when he joined a school holiday missionary activity conducted by a Divine Word Missionary (SVD) priest that he began to consider the idea of becoming a missionary priest.

Today, Francois is working towards making that vocational call a reality, having travelled across the world to take up formation for the Divine Word Missionaries at Dorish Maru College in Melbourne.

Francois is the sixth of eight siblings and says he comes from a very devoted Catholic family, “especially my mother who made sure that all the children went to Church”.
“My family helped me to know God,” he says.

“And then, when the parish priest would come to our community to celebrate Mass, I observed the way he interacted with people and I was attracted to his goodness.”

Francois says two decisive experiences led him to the SVD – a serious car accident and an almost-fatal incident where he accidentally drank poison.

“It was prayer that saved me,” he says. “It is because of God’s love that I am still alive.”

Francois joined the SVD in 2010, beginning with one year of pastoral training and from 2011-2016 he studied philosophy before being sent to Ghana to complete the novitiate program.

He arrived in Australia to study Theology in July 2016 and says he is enjoying his time in formation here.

“Formation is a time for me to deepen my knowledge, my wisdom, my relationship with God, and with other people around me,” he says. “I see myself as someone who has the heart to love, to serve and to understand people in their difficulties and various circumstances.”

Francois says he sees the SVD’s multicultural charism as “a coming together of men from various countries, living in harmony in the midst of diversity”.

“I feel happy and fulfilled in following God’s call,” he says.