Bro. John Gouwang, SM renewal of vows in Rome
On March 23, I, together with Daniel Fernández renewed religious vows in the Chapel of School in Rome. The mass of renewal was presided by Fr. Mario Castelucci, SM, the regional superior of Italy, and assisted by Frs. John Larsen and Pedro, Donato and Aisake, and two Marist priests from the Italian Marist community. Also in attendance were the family of Daniel from Spain and Sr. Xiao Shuqin, a Chinese sister who happened to be one of our witnesses. The liturgy was beautifully celebrated with different languages. After the celebration, everyone was invited to taste Filipino lunch that was prepared by Josephine who is our Filipino partner in “Casa di Maria”.
With confidence and happiness, I renewed my religious vows for the third time to the Society of Mary. I am grateful for the support and prayers from every confrere in the Philippine district that has accompanied my religious life so far. Thanks to Fr. John Larsen, SM who accepted my vows and all my confreres in “Casa di Maria”.
Right after the celebration, I went to Marconia, a small town in Southern Italy, where there is a Marist community which serves for two parishes. I went there together with Lauro and Fernando for Holy week and Easter celebration. I have to say that it was really a fruitful experience. The Marist community and the parishioners warmly welcomed us. We visited families, and especially we spent time talking with the youth and playing with children. It also encourages me to be always dedicated to the works of Mary.