Message from FR JOACHIM REGO CP, SUPERIOR-GENERAL, ROME.
My name is Fr Joachim Rego and I was recently elected Superior-General of the Congregation of the Passion of Jesus Christ - the Passionists. Only a few months earlier, I was re-elected by my brothers to serve them in the role as Provincial, i.e. to lead the Passionists of the Holy Spirit Province consisting of Passionist communities and ministries in Australia, Papua New Guinea and New Zealand. My election as Superior-General came as a complete surprise to me; I mention this because I see it very much as another “call” from God, as Blessed Teresa of Calcutta used to say: “a call within a Call”.
Vocation, as a life choice, is ‘call’ – God’s call, and, of course, requires a sense of attentive listening in order to discern the movement of God’s Spirit. This means that we must make time in quiet and silence to hear and sift through the many voices and promptings within oneself, trying as best as possible to discern what is “of God”. In this process of discernment it is always helpful to find a faithful listening guide (spiritual director) with whom one can share the movements within oneself.
It is true that in the process of discerning a vocation – a life choice, one does not know for certain, especially if one feels ‘a call’ to the priesthood or religious life. There will always be some wrestling with God in prayer and with oneself. However, in the end, one has to trust where the attraction is strongest and, aided by dialogue in prayer and assistance from others, follow what may be your call in life. As we say in Australia: “Give it a go!” Of course, this calls for courage and risk, not blindly, but with faith and trust in the God who calls.
The Passionists in Australia, Papua New Guinea and New Zealand are committed to promoting our life and mission in the Church and world of today. If you feel some desire within yourself to choose our way of life in community and our mission “to keep alive the memory of God’s Love as shown in the Passion and Death of Jesus”, then please make contact with us…and together, let’s make a difference.
Fr Tom McDonough, Provincial
At World Youth Day in Brazil, our Holy Father Pope Francis inspired millions of young people to follow Christ and to make a difference in the world. He spoke so simply and beautifully of the invitation to carry the cross with Christ, and for Christ to carry our crosses himself.
Pope Francis said: What has the Cross given to those who have gazed upon it or touched it? What has it left in each one of us? It gives us a treasure that no one else can give: the certainty of the unshakable love which God has for us. A love so great that it enters into our sin and forgives it, enters into our suffering and gives us the strength to bear it. It is a love which enters into death to conquer it and to save us. The Cross of Christ contains all the love of God, his immeasurable mercy. This is a love in which we can place all our trust, in which we can believe. Dear young people, let us entrust ourselves to Jesus, let us give ourselves over entirely to him! Only in Christ crucified and risen can we find salvation and redemption. With him, evil, suffering, and death do not have the last word, because he gives us hope and life: The Cross of Christ invites us also to allow ourselves to be smitten by his love, teaching us always to always look upon others with mercy and tenderness, especially those who suffer, who are in need of help, who need a word or a concrete action which requires us to step outside ourselves to meet them and to extend a hand to them
To love Christ in His Passion, and to be there for others in theirs - that is our unique vocation as Passionists - to live with passion, to make a difference.
You will find in our Passionist Family - religious, sisters, priests, lay people - ways in which you can answer the invitation of the Gospel, the invitation of Pope Francis - to keep alive the memory of the Passion of Jesus
We pray that the Holy Spirit of Jesus will set your hearts on fire so you can chose Christ and follow the path He wants for you.
In Christ Crucified,
Rev Thomas P. McDonough cp.
Message from the Vocations Director
Fr Kevin Hennessy CP.
We Passionists of the Holy Spirit Province (of Australia New Zealand and Papua New Guinea) continue to make vocations a high priority. We commit ourselves to the task of inviting and discerning with those who consider they may have a call from the Lord, to follow him as a vowed member to the Congregation of the Passion.
I am passionate about being a Passionist and I feel privileged to have walked this road with over five thousand professed men and women in more than 59 countries. We Religious vow to live a life centred on the Passion of Jesus; a life of poverty, obedience and celibacy.
Living a life in community challenges us to respond with generosity to the needs of others. Our Communities are called to live in brotherhood in prayer and ministry as Passionists while some may be called by God to be a priest. I hope this brochure enables you to begin a possible journey with us in the discerning of God's call to Religious life. I would be delighted to receive an email, SMS, phone call or a letter from you. Let’s walk together to see what God is calling you to.
If you are reading this, you’re probably thinking about your future. Perhaps you feel a restlessness within and a call to a more meaningful way of life. Perhaps you are the kind of person who is looking for the challenge of “the road less travelled”. You may be wondering if you are being faithful to your true self, if there’s a more fulfilling way to use the talents and strengths God has given you. Maybe you’ve heard about a Passionist, or you may have met a Passionist and you would like to know more about our community, our ministry, our prayer lives, our passion for life!
Whatever your reason, I’d like to hear from you. (To send a message, click here:
Discerning your vocation is a process of discovery aided by prayer and contact with a mentor. It is about exploring important personal goals that will require openness and honesty. Initial Discernment is a first serious look into whether you have a vocation to religious life, and in particular, to our Passionist Community.
A Passionist will explore with you some of the thoughts and feelings that have led you to this point. This journey of initial discernment will also involve partnering with a Spiritual Director and a prayer partner.
The next stage is the Formal Discernment. You will do this with a vowed Passionist who will accompany you as we ask you to take a deeper look at your faith life and of your understanding of religious life and the reasons leading you to the Passionists.
You will also learn more about how Passionists live in community and the various kinds of ministries Passionists are involved with. This all takes place while living in a formation community with Passionists.
You will learn more about our founder, St Paul of the Cross and about our Passionist Charism - that is the fire that inspires us to dedicate our lives to live as Passionists. This stage may take a year to complete.
As your formal discernment progresses, you and your accompanier will decide if your are called to enter into the Novitiate phase of formation.
What is important to keep in mind is that the discernment process is a process of dialogue with your accompanier and other Passionists and experiencing the Passionist way of life first-hand.