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The General Congregation has been able to coordinate very well the development of the Pious Schools in Africa. Not only among the Piarist Fathers, but also among the Piarist Sisters and Calasanzian Sisters .Therefore, the General Congregation decided to try the same thing in Asia, although the foundations in India and the Philippines are a reality only at the starting point. In May 1996, we have the first meeting of Piarist Fathers in Aroor, India. To that meeting were present: Fr. General, Fr. Jesus Lecea (Delegate General for the Missions), Fr. Placido Menditto, Argentine Provincial, from whom the Indian foundation depends, Fr. Ricardo Moreno, from Argentine, Fr. Jose Alfaro, responsible of Aroor, Fr. Imanol Lasquibar, General Delegate from Japan-Philippines and Fr. German Lumbreras, from Japan. During several days they meet under the hot weather, more than regular does during those days, and they talk about the future of the Piarists in Asia. A fruit of this meeting is the pamphlet Witnesses of Jesus and Disciples of Calasanz in Asia. On it there are some instructions: we go to learn, inculturation, to serve the poor children, vocations and formation, possibility of cooperating among the different foundations. For the moment, the realities are in the first stage and we cannot talk about cooperation.

 

During the General Chapter of 1997, there is a meeting in Rome to exchange opinions about the future in Asia.

 

The first days of May, 1998, there is another meeting in Aroor. The members of the group are: Fr. General and  Fr. Lecea  for the General Congregation; Fr Menditto, Fr. Alfaro and Fr. Jose Marco, for Argentine; Fr. Jose Burgues and Fr. Lorenczo Errandonea, for Japan-Philippines. Fr. Fernando Negro, Master of Novices from Cameroon, takes part, too, where three young Indians have made the Novitiate and where another five will go soon. The meeting was held in Aroor, because during this time is inaugurated the second building or Postulancy of the house, and besides that, the first three Indian novices are going to make their first Profession. In the meeting comes out again the themes of the Document of Aroor, written in 1995. We talk, above everything, about the vocational pastoral and initial education; about the orientation of our works and about the coordination in an Asian level, and other questions such as printings in English and the presence of volunteers. It seems that it is not easy, so far, to carry out the project of a common formation of our candidates. 

 

Anyway, the good will of meeting yearly in different countries, remains, in order to exchange information and to help ourselves in the English publication; but it is going to be difficult to go further. Really, India is a different world that has very little in common with the Pacific zone. The diversity in Asia seems to be much bigger than the one that exists among the African countries where the Piarists are. Anyway, the future is open.

Copyright 2004 *The Piarist Fathers: Japan-Philippines General Delegation* All Rights Reserved!