Take up your pens, dear confreres! (PE nr. 1087 – 2018/01)

The Editorial Board of the Petit Echo wishes you a very Happy New Year! This year we will continue to look more closely at the different themes of our last General Chapter, notably Formation, at the service of confreres and of the mission, the government and structures of the Society, the finances of the Society and, of course, the 150th anniversary of the Society.

The General Council would like each confrere to participate in one way or another supplying material to our family magazine. The most direct way is to contribute an article which would support confreres in keeping the flame of mission alive.

As Editor I would like to ask you to send articles to us based on your own personal experiences of the mission entrusted to you. We are not interested in any way in learned articles, all we are asking is that you share how you live out your mission there where the Society has planted you and what are the ‘fruits’ that the Lord has produced through your availability. What were my ‘desert’ moments? What were my rewarding experiences? By doing this, we will be telling people of the hope dwelling in us and telling each other that the Lord’s work in which we participate and for which we have given our lives, is not in vain and is worth proclaiming on the rooftops of the world.

You do not have to be a famous author or an intellectual, this concerns all the confreres who have been appointed and sent on a specific mission by the Society be it in Africa or outside Africa. It means sharing generously and simply our joy at following the Lord on the sometimes twisting paths of the mission. We should not look down on the ‘insignificant’ experiences we have; maybe a devoted catechist teaching children catechism in a village, or teaching secondary school students, accompanying a parish group, or just simply being a chaplain to those on the peripheries or the sick. There are so many edifying stories to tell.

Normally we ask confreres to write articles of 900 words and to send us three of four photos as illustrations. This fills four pages of the Petit Echo. The editorial board has the role of deciding which articles should be published. If you are not sure of the ‘readability’ of your article, then you can give permission to the editorial board to improve the style (including basic corrections). What we really need is your story and your experiences which go to make up the life of our ‘little’ Society.

You may be interested by the history surrounding the beginning of such and such a mission and if you have details (dates of events, names of people, places and photos etc.) do not hesitate to write a good article (up to 2,000 words). It is an opportunity to showcase a number of our confreres who showed proof of extraordinary zeal. It is a way of thanking God for the particular gifts given to our Society over the course of the years. In fact our column “150 years, 6,500 missionaries” is there for that. It is our space to honour and relate the lives of confreres who have really inspired us and opened up unexpected paths of doing mission.

So, confreres take up your pens (or cursor) and write! Each of us has his own “sacred history;” tell us about it!

Freddy Kyombo, M.Afr.

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