Newsletter of the District of Asia

 March - April 1999

Chronicle of the District of Asia

January 2    In Iloilo, birth of the Junior Praesidium, 'Mary, Queen of Apostles', of the Legion of Mary.

February 17    Consecration of the Department of Trade and Industry.

February 18    Fathers Onoda and Couture left for their 2 1/2 weeks in the Northern missions of the District, Korea and Japan. This included three public slide presentations of the Holy Shroud of Turin, in the cities of Osaka, Tokyo and Seoul. On this trip, the District Superior was able to assess the development of these missions, difficult because of the materialism and paganism predominant in these countries. While in Korea, there were fortunate to meet a university professor who has read many of Archbishop Lefebvre's works and who follows our apostolate with a keen interest.

February 26    Father Soliman gave another Guides' Session to the Cebu/Bohol Apostles of Mary on the theme of liberalism. The Session lasted three days. Bishop Tissier de Mallerais arrived in Bombay for a 9 day tour of the Indian missions: Bombay, Goa, Trichy and Palayamkottai, and to discuss with the brave Fr. Blute the future of the Indian apostolate.

February 27   "Our" Dominican preacher, Fr. Marie Dominique continued to deliver the fruits of his contemplation: after Korea and Japan, last October, he now left us to give a Parish mission in New Zealand and a priests' retreat in Australia... Long live the contemplative life! .

March 1    Just before leaving Seoul, Fr. Couture is given a chance to write to the President of Korea to urge him to consecrate his country to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. Knowing the power of St. Joseph, we can hope for the possible requests to actually be fulfilled.

March 2    Frs. Couture and Onoda visited the famous church of Oura, in Nagasaki, place of the rebirth of Catholicism in Japan, in 1865. On March 17, 1865, at the end of his mass, Fr. Petitjean M.E.P was met by a group of devout women who timidly asked him three questions:

"Do you accept the Pope of Rome? -Yes.

Do you honor the Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of God? -‑ Of course!

Father, are you married? No, Catholic priests don't marry.

Well, Father, there are 10,000 of us, over the hills there; we and our parents and ancestors have been waiting for Catholic priests for the last 230 years!"

How amazing then for two SSPX priests, to visit such an historical place, (unfortunately devastated by modernism like everywhere else) and to encounter there some people who struggle to receive communion kneeling and on the tongue and who are yearning for the Traditional Mass! Let us pray that these contacts bear fruits, that the new crypto Catholics of Japan rediscover the faith brought by Fr. Petitjean and persecuted again.

March 3     The following day, the two priests succeeded to have a brief encounter with Bishop Shimamoto, Archbishop of Nagasaki and President of the Bishops Conference of Japan. The encounter was let us say, providential, as a ceremony of ordination had just finished in the Cathedral. The two priests sneaked through the crowd and managed to kiss the Archbishop's ring, hoping to exchange a few words. However, the Prelate simply asked where Fr. Onoda came from, then exclaimed an often heard "ah!" and continued his walk without further ado. The meeting lasted about 13 seconds... Nevertheless, it shows that we are open to talk but are simply denied the right to express ourselves. A few exchanged faxes with the Archbishop had taken place previously so he knew very well who we were.

March 4‑5  In Fukyama, near Hiroshima, Frs. Onoda and Couture were invited to bless two new ships, each of 186 meters (5.70 ft) long by 25 meters high (80 ft) with a carrying capacity of 45,000 tons. It was an impressive ceremony,  imagine blessing Noah's Ark! It was about the same size. At the end of the blessing of the second ship," Andhika Maria Puspita", just before the launching, Mr. Robert Sumantri, the Managing Director of Andhika shipping company (more than 1500 employees) consecrated the whole company to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. How edifying to see big and small businessmen standing up for their faith. It was also an interesting occasion to meet a lot of VIP’s from all over the world, Canada, Japan, Indonesia,  Singapore. . .

March 6     Bishop Fellay arrived unexpectedly (on his way to Australia) and thus got stranded at Singapore airport as a result of miscommunication between Europe and Asia... He nevertheless spent there two days visiting the faithful, giving them a conference and inquiring about the future priory...

March 8      After ending his Indian mission in the company of unfriendly amoebas, Bishop Tissier landed in Colombo, Sri Lanka, for a short 2 day stop-over, enough to give him time for a public conference on Cardinal Ratzinger.

March 9      News from Australia: will our pre-seminarians be granted a visa to go to Holy Cross seminary or not? If not, will we have to open St. Bernard's Seminary THIS coming June, one year ahead of schedule? Will the non­Australian Holy Cross seminarians and brothers have to come to the Philippines?

March 11    Manila: priests' recollection and day of adoration. Bishop Lazo came.

March 12‑17 Women's retreat in Iloilo: 15 retreatants, many (60%) are former retreatants, which shows perseverance.

March 15 Father Marie Dominique finally returned home after his two weeks Down­Under.

March 17  Our two Philippine postulants in Australia received their soutane.

March 19  Sister Mary Therese, our Dominican novice, received her black veil and made her first profession, in the hands of the District Superior of Asia while at the same moment, in Holy Cross Seminary, Brother Ignatius made his first profession too.

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