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Saturday, July 29, 2017

Staying or be moved

Staying or be moved
Perhaps not everyone knows that we friars every three years have to face a sort of deadline. Last month of May, we celebrated the "Provincial Chapter," in which about twenty Fathers, superiors and representatives all communities, did reflect on the past in order to trace the path towards the future of our Carmelite life. In the Chapter those friars are called to elect the new Provincial Superior and his Councilors. During the three years of their commitment to govern, they are responsible for the most important decisions to be taken. So, every three years all responsibilities "expire" and you have to verify whether to change the person who deals with that specific duty or simply confirming that person in the same service. Sometimes there are more urgent needs elsewhere, and each of us becomes available, with the consciousness that everywhere we are sent, that is the place where God calls us to live and work. So, with His help, everything will be fine.
Just these last days, decisions have been made for our Bozoum Mission too.
Well, I'll stay at Bozoum for another three years.
In few weeks’ time, will arrive Father Matteo Pesce, who was in Bangui replacing Father Enrico Redaelli, who after living with us for three years leaves Bozoum to go as a superior and master of novices in Bouar, at St. Elias Convent. We will miss him (though he will not be far away) mostly for its presence and sympathy, for its apostolic work and love for prayer, for its natural talent to stay with kids and youth. One more thing: we will miss him also for his support for Milan soccer team.
I’ll go on with my mission in Bozoum, but I ask for a prayer so that I can continue to work for the parish and all the people. May the Lord keep me in excitement and vivacity to always seek new ways to help others to believe and to love.  
At present we live under a heavy uncertainty. There are often shots. Last Monday in the area were present dozens of armed antibalaka. Frequently this is a matter of revenge, but this movement of armed people is worrying, also because there’s no countermove from the local Administration.
The rainy season continues. On Wednesday I left Bozoum, direction Bouar, but after 30 km I had to stop my traveling because a truck was stuck in the mud, blocking the passage. I needed to drive back to Bozoum.
The training on accounting and management for about thirty participants is almost at the end.
Still here in Bozoum last Wednesday, there have been tests for the second attempt of those who were declared eligible for Maturity. The correction and the vote for this test are concentrated in Bangui. Because of this, many errors in evaluating came to light. For instance: many students had zero in gymnastics. The tests were made here at Bozoum, and the results were sent to the Capital but were badly inserted into the final classification. For this reason many doubts aroused about many results.

F. Enrico

Saturday, July 22, 2017

Build up, despite

Build up, despite
While the Country continues its never ending crisis, and while Government, International Community, UN Peace Keepers, (some) NGOs and (some) Communities seem to be making their best in keeping instability and doing as little as possible, we try to complaining  less and to working more!  
This week in Bozoum, we have had three beautiful events which we consider three very "good" news.
On Saturday, our Bozoum Savings Bank (CEC Bozoum) celebrated 10 years of life. An initiative which began soundlessly and now can proudly count nearly 2,000 saving members. Because of such positive success they decided to celebrate the event with a beautiful initiative: the gift of 25 mattresses to Bozoum Hospital. It's nice to give back to the city, it's nice to have thought of a concrete gesture, it's great that the gift is the result of the savings and the work of the Savings Bank and not of other entities usual help.
Monday morning another "beautiful" news: the beginning of 2 weeks of Accounting and Management training, for students who have finished our high school and for a dozen people working in the Hospital Administration and other Public Institutions.
Tuesday night we received one more "beautiful" news: the publication of the results of the Maturity Tests we were waiting for. Unfortunately, the results on all of Central Africa are rather catastrophic. Of the 16,180 candidates, only 929 were promoted (5.74%). Then there are the "Admissible": students who can retry the test for one or two insufficient subjects (if they pass, they will be promoted).
At our ”Lycée St.Augustin” among 17 candidates 8 are promoted, 8 of them "admissible" and only one  rejected. It's a great result!
These are more solid stones in building up the Central Africa Republic.

Formazione Contabilità - Gestione
Formation Comptabilità - Gestion

Ritorno degli Scout
Retour des Scouts

Gli alunni del nostro Liceo St Augustin

Saturday, July 15, 2017

Travels and people

Una sfida all'ortografia. NE CHERCHE PAS A SAVOIR
Vive l'orthographe: NE CHERCHE  PAS A SAVOIR

Travels and people
On Friday, July 7th, we leave Bouar, going to Yaounde, Cameroon capital. 
We face a distance of bit more than 700 km with the usual surprises at the borders, so we journey calmly. We travel in five: Father Saverio, Father Cyriaque, brother Louise Blaise, Sister Christine who leaves Bozoum in her way back to Congo and me.  Going through the borders this time it was easier, although in any case, the travel documents’ checking it takes a good hour and a half. After a short stop at Garoua Boulay we continue towards Bertoua, where we spend the night.
Traveling is always an unknown! On the road there are many trucks, some with interesting written advertising, while watching the landscape and the people it’s always very much interesting.  
On Saturday we leave at 5.30 am, and at 10 am we are in Yaounde. Here the Carmelites have two communities. We make a short stop at Nkoabang parish located right at the entrance to the city, and then we go to the convent of Nkolbisson. As usual in the city there is a very heavy traffic, requiring almost an hour to go through. In the afternoon and on Sunday we meet with the fathers living here. There are also two fathers of our Province: Father Domenico Rossi and Father Marco Gazzoli.
On Sunday afternoon I give a ride towards  Yaounde Airport to Father Saverio, our Provincial Superior who is going back to Italy. On Monday morning I went to the Carmelite Nuns to celebrate Mass, and also to give them some advice on their wood-burning oven! In the afternoon myself and Father Cyriaque begin our trip back home. We spend the night at Bertoua, and on Tuesday we leave early morning and at 11.30 am we are already in Bouar. I continue on, arriving at Bozoum in the evening.
In these days here in Bozoum rumors of an attack by Seleka are frightening everybody. They are no more than 100 km from us. Many traders have run away, and we try to calm down people, even with simple actions, such as going to the market to buy few tomatoes.
We hope for the best.

Friday, July 7, 2017

against the current

against the current
Once arrived, on Friday afternoon, at Bozoum, we stay at home on Saturday and Sunday enjoying the presence of Father Saverio our newly elected Provincial Superior.
On Sunday morning we celebrate the solemn Eucharist with Fr. Enrico and Fr. Saverio. After the Mass, the Women's Promotion Center "Cana" presents the work done by girls and women during this school year. The Center, supported by the friends of of Prague, gives the opportunity to about 40 women being able to attend educational courses, lasting 3 years, of childcare, sewing, embroidery, family economy, cooking...
In the afternoon, I leave with Father Saverio towards Bouar and Baoro, where we arrive around 6.00 pm, after covering about 180 km. On Monday, the Provincial meets the fathers of our community, while in the meantime I dedicate myself to put in place faucets and other fitting taps, to make the community's new kitchen operational, which we inaugurate with a well-deserved dish of homemade noodles.
In the afternoon we leave towards Bouar, to visit St. Elia’s Community. While leaving I receive a call from Bozoum, where are circulating voices of an imminent attack from Seleka, an armed group that rages in much of the country. As I follow the situation, I try to inform the UN Peace Makers to understand what they can do about. As we wait to see how the situation develops, we take the decision to send out of danger the Congolese Sisters. The next morning I and Father Norberto, leaving at 4.30 am, are driving back to Bozoum. We do not feel comfortable in leaving Father Enrico alone, as we do not want to abandon the people of Bozoum. We arrive at 7.30 am, and fortunately the armed men of the Seleka seem to have dispersed far from Bozoum about fifty miles, and for now the attack is avoided. Around 10 am I walk downtown. It’s an way to give kind of calm to the people. Seeing us the people regain confidence. At 1.00 pm we hear some shots. They are not the criminals of Seleka, but the antibalaka (young people in the city and surroundings): they attacked the police depriving the policemen of their weapons.
Wednesday, as the situation seems to be stable, I go back to Bouar with Father Enrico, because in the afternoon and the following day we have meetings with the other fathers of Mission Delegation. We enjoy emotional and wonderful moments of discussion, reflection sharing our experiences about the journey that the Carmel Order is doing in Central Africa.
Tomorrow morning, Friday July 7th, we leave with the Provincial towards Yaounde, Cameroon, where Father Saverio will end his pastoral visit.