July-August-September Issue



(VOL. 61, No. 3 /July-August-September 2018)


Spiritual Life

What a Team! – André Gadbois

In Quebec, we say that there are four seasons and they are rather different one from the other. Together, these four wonders become skillful
teachers, capable of teaching us the art of living serenely and harmoniously. In my experience, as someone in his 70s, I’ve learned that they
do not harm each other, they are not jealous, they accept each other generously and humbly. I dare to say that they are surprisingly kind
and their “lessons” are surprisingly subtle… a little like the parables of the Prophet of Nazareth: they disturb and provoke small “resurrections.”
Sometimes they shake us or anger us, defy us or knock us down. We need silence to discover their rich messages and walk with them… hand
in hand! They do not strike those who poke fun at them or refuse to embrace them. Without pretention, they invite patient observation, open
dialogue, and sharing of talents. They invite us to look at things differently, to take the risk of reflecting deeply for a while.

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Cultures and Mission

Becoming Familiar with Differences – Maurice Demers

Since dictatorships have given way to democratic governments in Latin America and violence issues have been resolved in many countries, it is possible for schools in many regions of Quebec to offer cultural or humanitarian travels to students. For example, Saint-Jean-Eudes School goes beyond cultural exposures but offer travels on a humanitarian basis: How about doing some community work in a developing country? Why
not! The students of Saint-Jean-Eudes decided to have a ‘hands-on’ experience in Nicaragua, Ecuador, Peru, Costa Rica and Honduras1. Such trips offer many enriching experiences to the Quebec students.


The Budding of a Better Life – Émilienne Raherimalala

The world today is greedy for excessive pleasure, seeking always to be in a state of well-being. We wish to live life to the fullest, to make the most of it, but the demands of performance are draining, and we are constantly searching for ways to prolong this state of physical and emotional well-being.

The Fantasies of God in Délia’s Life – Suzanne Labelle, m.i.c.

God tempers the wind to the shorn lamb says the proverb. In other words, God mercifully ensures that misfortune does not overwhelm the
weak or helpless; God takes pleasure in giving to each “lamb” what it needs to protect itself from the wind in order to accomplish its mission in the world. Leaders in the making are usually endowed with a pioneering spirit which leads them to sometimes take surprising initiatives.

Thus it was with Délia Tétreault, even before she became the Foundress of a religious institute. She stood out so well with astonishing new ideas that individuals who did not have the same broad-mindedness were perplexed before her behavior. During a short stay in a religious community, at the age of eighteen, she was judged as being “mischievous, offhand, emancipated, and somewhat exalted”. Mischievous? Perhaps she was too joyful to fit in with the Jansenism spirit of the time. Offhand? We can suppose she expressed her personal opinions
too freely; her creative thoughts were not always conformed to preconceived ideas. Emancipated? She was already conscious of the tremendous needs existing in the world; without doubt she was more open than the thinking of her milieu towards the end of the 19th century. Exalted? Being extraordinarily inspired in her futuristic views could be considered as suspicious by her eers and those around her.




PRÉCI Project — Madagascar – Thomas Cardinal

It is with joy and pride that a team of five students from ÉTS (Janick Lavoie, Pascal Pelletier-Dubé, Thomas Cardinal, Jean-Simon Forest and
Annabelle Boinet) joined the large PRÉCI family, last fall 2016. Moved by the level of global inequality, these students decided to contribute, in their own way, to an engineering project which they translated in terms of sharing, cooperation, and humanitarianism.

Briefly, the project consisted in planning, seeking funds, designing and building a medical center for the Ambatofotsy local community. This
village is located 300 km from the Capital, Antananarivo; its approximate population of 4,000 has no access to electricity and drinking water. In the vicinity there was no establishment for health care services and villagers had to walk more than three hours to find one. With determination and perseverance the PRÉCI team completed the project thus allowing all the inhabitants of the area to receive essential medical services and for women to give birth in adequate sanitary conditions.

Summer Fun – Éric Desautels

The summer season is a special and long-awaited time for many people. It’s the time for vacation, relaxation and fun. While modern societies focus on tourism, homecoming or outdoor activities, some focus more on having fun, playing sports or discovering new hobbies.

I have found, in recent interviews with missionaries from different congregations, that leisure activities like soccer, knitting or crafts are important in their adopted countries. I asked myself, “What are the sports and activities that they themselves practice? What are their summer activities? How can they share their passions with the people here and abroad?”


Work of Hope in Haiti – Mésina Paulémon, m.i.c.

Sister Mésina was born in Potino, Haiti. After completing a bachelor’s degree in pastoral theology at the University of Sherbrooke, she enthusiastically dedicated herself to her country’s Church. But she soon realized that distributing spiritual bread was not enough. She began to offer the women of Haiti means of subsistence to help develop their self-esteem.

I’m currently in Haiti, helping people with their material problems, but also helping them find spiritual bread. My tools are the new  evangelization and catechesis. I’m very happy to pursue this mission for the Haitian Church in collaboration with the Diocesan Directors. At the request of Bishop Chibly Langlois, President of Haiti’s Bishops’ Conference, and Director Father Romel Eustache, I was named office coordinator for the National Catechetical Commission. I collaborate with the priests responsible for catechism in the country’s ten dioceses.



The Path of Being – Marie-Paule Sanfaçon, m.i.c.

In Haiti, the people live shattering situations which affect them deeply. Whether living in poverty, or stricken by natural cataclysm, or dealing with daily conflicts, the person who lives these traumas sometimes has difficulty seeing the light at the end of the tunnel. Sister Micheline Joseph, school directress, lived through heartwrenching situations and came to realize that beyond her religious training and being an educator, she needed a solid formation in psychology. Given the proper tools and knowledge she could help others come to grips with themselves; a person’s journey is always a complex and delicate matter.


Our Hearts Are Restless – Cecilia Hong, m.i.c.

What are our youth searching for today?
We often think of youth as a group of youngsters who search constantly for pleasure and entertainments. And yet we are unaware that deep
in their hearts they are ‘restless’. They are ‘restlessly’ searching for their identity, the meaning of their existence, the need to belong and be accepted. However due to a lack of proper guidance and support, many derail along the way and follow addictive behaviors and develop multiple personality and emotional disorders. Our youth needs our caring support and guidance. Youth are delightful, generous, passionate, dynamic and full of possibilities. They are gifted but fragile. Like ‘seedlings’ they need ‘good soil and loving care’ in order to bloom and blossom. This is why St. John Paul II had grasped deeply the needs of our youth and started World Youth Day. Since then, millions of youth have been affected and changed the course of their life. The impact of WYD has imprinted Christ in the core of their heart.


Urgent SMS...

Hurry, respond, I’m on the edge of an abyss... To receive a text like this would tear at the deepest parts of our hearts, wouldn’t it? Yet how many people, young and old, all helpless, commit suicide without ever receiving help? Whether in Korea, Japan or here in Quebec, statistics show that the suicide rate remains high. What is happening in our modern societies?

An obsessive search for well-being, the race to perform better, global superficiality and egocentrism to the extreme can discourage the most tenacious of people.

Recently, I met some young people who did not hesitate to contribute to a good cause.

Engineer graduates from Quebec spent months in Madagascar, in a remote region, building a medical center and creating a climate of dignity and respect for the people there. High school students from the Sherbooke area went to Costa Rica, leaving behind the “known” for the “unknown” to become familiar with another culture and to get involved in  their own communities when they returned. These important travels give people another view of the world and they become inspired to take part in its transformation.

These days, many people study psychology to better understand others and help them conquer the most difficult times in life. Sister Micheline did not hesitate to go back to school to help those in need, especially in Haiti. Sister Cecilia had sessions with young people so they can better understand each other and work toward an ideal life. In  his article, Éric shows us the importance of sports in the lives of young people, activities still being introduced and used by missionaries.

During this summer season, seize the occasion and live life to the fullest by spending beautiful moments with your family, taking time to rest and search within to better understand yourself and look at life with enthusiasm.

How is it that so many people despair of life? A question I ask myself… and are we not appalled by what we often hear and see?

Live life to the fullest for a more fraternal world, together where the joy of meeting each other in real life, not virtually, gives us hope for a better world, singing along with Jean Ferrat, Que c’est beau la vie or What a Wonderful World by Louis Armstrong...

The Team

Marie-Paule Sanfaçon, Directress of publication

Originally from Quebec, Sr. Marie-Paule was a missionary in Haiti; she worked with high-school students in the field of catechesis and also in youth ministry.  She is now directress of the MIC Missionary Press.

Translator : French to English - MIC Mission News

Sr. Claudette is a former missionary in Malawi, Africa.  She also worked in the Archdioceses of San Francisco, California; Toronto, Ontario and Vancouver, British Colombia as Archdiocesan coordinator and promoter of mission awareness activities. Within parish contexts, she coordinated religious education programs and accompanied youngsters on their faith journey.

André Gadbois, Editorial Board

Married and father of two children, André Gadbois, after several years in pastoral work, taught children with serious learning disabilities for 20 years and was school director for ten years. He has been very involved with catechumens of the Church in Montreal, and is the editor of their journal, le Sénevé.

Audrey Charland, Editorial Board

Audrey Charland, a 25-year-old graduate student with a master’s degree in Religious Studies, is trying her hand at something new: first the thesis, now the news article! After studying the history of Catholic missionary nuns in India, she has joined the MIC Missionary News team as the new Communications and Development Officer. This position will allow her to take on new and exciting challenges, and put her knowledge and skills into practice.


Éric Désautel, Editorial Board

Éric Desautels is a PhD candidate in the department of

Humanities at Concordia University’s Centre for

Interdisciplinary Studies in Society and Culture.


Maurice Demers, Editorial Board

Maurice Demers is an associate professor in the Department of History,

Faculty of Arts and Humanities at the University of Sherbrooke. He is the young father of three children.


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