Bengaluru, India. Sanyasa, the only Institute of Consecrated Life in India, organized a three day seminar on a relevant theme addressing the present scenario of India “Politics of Exclusivity, Division and Intimidation: A Critical Response from the Consecrated Persons” from 1st to 3rd February 2018. The seminar began on 1st February at 9:00 a.m. with an enthronement of the Word of God followed by prayer and lighting of the lamp. Then, Fr. Arul Jesu Robin cmf, the director of Sanyasa gave an overview of the seminar and welcomed each one warmly. Rev. Fr. Jacob Arakkal, cmf, the president of Sanyasa and the Provincial of the Bangalore Province gave an inaugural address in which he emphasized the prophetic role of the consecrated persons in the present scenario of India. About 125 men and women religious participated actively and benefited hugely from the seminar.
Renowned religious spoke on “Politics of Exclusivity, Division and Intimidation: A Critical Response from the Consecrated Persons” from various aspects. There were papers presented on the themes “Political Theology – Political Pneumatology: the Key to Understand, Discern and Act in the Context of Religious Pluralities and Diversities” by eminent international theologian Rev. Dr. Jose Cristo Rey G. Parades, cmf; “A Contemporary Analysis of the Indian Scenario” by famous sociologist Rev. Dr. Selvaraj Arulnathan, SJ; “Indian Constitution: A Fundamental Source of Reference” by popular advocate Mr. Robin Christopher; “Globalization and Its Potential Effects on Rural India” by committed social activist Rev. Dr. Hilaria Soundari; “Politics of Majoritarianism – A Threat to Democracy” again by Rev. Dr. Selvaraj Arulnathan; “Searching for the Foundational Wisdom in Religions – A Path towards Inclusivity and Acceptance” by outstanding theologian Rev. Dr. Xavier Manavath, cmf; “Religions – Agents of Social Transformation” and “Promotion of Justice, Peace and Integrity of Creation for Nation Building” by the prophet of the poor Rev. Fr. Vincent Anesthasiar and finally “Dialogue and Reconciliation: Ways to Counter Religious Polarization” by exceptional Gandhian philosopher Dr. A. Pusparajan.
The seminar was indeed an eye-opening experience for the participants. It questioned the life, vocation, consecration and mission of the consecrated person in the present situation. Can the consecrated persons, called to be the light of the world, the salt of the world, the leaven of the world, called to establish God’s kingdom here on earth, called to stand for the values of God’s kingdom be silent? Be mere spectators? Where is the inclusiveness that Jesus spoke of? Can the preachers of the Gospel, be mum, mute, tight-lipped at the display of exclusivity and discrimination that bring division and polarization that are totally alien to the message of the Gospel? The participants were convinced that as radical followers of Jesus, consecrated persons should categorically defend and proclaim unity, tolerance and mutual acceptance in the midst of the diversities of faith, languages and cultures of India.
The seminar came to an end on 3rd February 2018 with the solemn Eucharistic celebration, presided over by Rev. Dr. Jose Thenpillil, cmf, the Provincial of St. Thomas Province.
In collaboration with Sanyasa, Rev. Dr. Xavier Manavath, cmf, the Rector of Claretian Seminary, Malleswaram, Bengaluru organized a one day seminar on the same theme on 28th January 2018 at Claretian seminary, Malleswaram. About 125 religious participated and appreciated our effort in offering quality service for the ongoing formation of the consecrated persons of India.