As usual, Father Frank’s Log is taking a break for a few weeks over Easter to allow time for the preparation of ceremonies and a wee bit of a breather afterwards. We are all still trying to get our full energies back after Covid and, from talking to others who have been through it all before, that can take a little while.
As you will read in the Newsletter, Father John will be returning to India on Easter Tuesday to take part in his own Provincial Chapter. More properly, we should call it a Congress, as Father John belongs, not to a fully-fledged Province, but to the Vice-Province of St. Thomas, the great apostle to India. The Vice-Province belongs to a bigger Passionist entity called. PASPAC. PASPAC is an abbreviation which stands for “Passionists in Asia and the Pacific Configuration.” It is a culturally rich configuration of self-governing entities, consisting of 10 countries, including, among others, Australia, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea & Vietnam, aiming to promote dialogue and solidarity on many different levels, and to foster initiatives and common action for the life and mission of the Passionist Congregation globally, which is why we have been happy to welcome Father John here to Glasgow to be a part of our mission in Scotland. In the past, when the Passionists were trying to get established in India, some of our men went out from Ireland and Scotland to help them out, and so, it does seem fitting that we should welcome them in return, and we are grateful for their help, but also for the cultural enrichment that we know they can bring.
I know it seems very soon for Father John to be going back when he has only just got started but, when he left India last September, at that stage destined for Holy Cross. Belfast, we never expected that it would take so long to get Home Office approval to change his place of work to Glasgow, after Father Gareth was moved to Belfast, and then to negotiate all the safeguarding protocols. However, it’s important to be patient, and to do all these things properly, and we will look forward to his return in May, when he will really be able to delve into his ministry here, and to develop all the qualities we know he will bring to it.
Out at Bishopbriggs, as I say, we are still recouping post-Covid energies. We had a simple, but very enjoyable celebration for Father Justinian’s 91st birthday. The next day, on the flimsy pretext of an invitation to go to his brother’s house to watch the Grand National, there was yet another “surprise” celebration with many other family members. I hope my social life is as good when I am 91. In fact, I don’t think it was even that good when I was 21!
Anyway, this was never intended to be a full log, just an opportunity to wish you all a very Happy Easter with the many blessings that come with it. The log will return for Sunday 8th May. Until then, as ever, protect yourselves, protect your loved ones, protect others and, of course, protect the Risen Christ in your lives – Alleluia, Alleluia!