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by Fr Dan Harding
The author is an Australian Columban who worked in Chile for many years. He is now editor of The Far East, the Columban magazine in Australia and New Zealand.
On 4 June 1770 Captain Cook sailed into a passage through the Great Barrier Reef that was surrounded by beautiful continental islands. He was on his historic voyage of discovery up the east coast of Australia. These islands and the sea passage were named the Whitsunday Islands and Passage after the liturgical celebration of the day, Whitsunday (also known as ‘Whitsunday’ or ‘Whitsun’). Actually Cook had miscalculated his date and it was really the following day, Whit Monday.
Hill Inlet, Whitsunday Islanda the largest of the Whitsunday Islands
What is this liturgical celebration called Whitsunday? It is another name for the second most important day after Easter in the Church’s liturgical calendar - the great Solemnity of Pentecost. The name Whitsunday comes from White Sunday when in Medieval times, those who had been baptized seven weeks earlier at Easter donned again their white baptismal robes. Some baptisms also took place at this time.
By Fr G. Chris Saenz SSC
An American Columban, working with our seminarians in Chile, reflects on the spirit of the Chilean people in the aftermath of the major earthquake that hit that country on 27 February.
By Fr Chris Saenz SSC
Father Saenz, a Columban from Omaha, Nebraska, USA, was ordained in 2000. He had part of his formation in the Philippines. We are now observing the Year of the Eucharist. His article shows how a debate over the role of the Eucharist helps heal wounds caused by ‘the sword and the cross’ in Chile and Argentina.
Ever since childhood I was always taught that the sacraments, especially the Eucharist, were the cornerstone of our Catholic faith. During my training as a priest, it was reinforced that the Eucharist is the center of our faith, the most sacred Catholic celebration. Jesus Christ’s body, broken and shared, brings healing to his people.
By Father Cireneo Matulac SSC
Father Cireneo is a recently ordained Columban priest. He spent two years in Chile as part of his first missionary assignment. Below he shares with us a story of a little girl he came to know in a barrio in Chile.
By Sr Sally Oyzon SSC
By Sister Victoria Lerin FMM
Floods were three meters deep after four days of ceaseless rain in Santiago, the capital of Chile, in June 2002. The worst hit areas were poorer sections of the city and nearby farms. Eleven people died and many suffered from diseases the floods brought in their wake. Farmers lost livestock.
By: Sr. Cecilia Cuizon, SSC
This year for me seemed to fly so fast that I did not even notice that it was time to send greetings to my loved ones. Here in Iquique, the joyful melodies of Christmas season are not heard until the 23rd or the 24th of December. Christmas is mainly for Children in Iquique. No wonder, fathers have to set aside a bit from their salary every year for their children. When Christmas comes, all workers dressed in deferent styles, with Santa Claus in the middle of them and with their vehicles decorated (because there is a price for the best decorated vehicle) deliver the gifts to their respective children. So, a group of children wait for Santa Claus’ truck to pass by, all day and all night in case they will miss him.