The St. Matthew Province has opened the new formation year 2020-2021 with the entrance of new aspirants to its seminaries in Indonesia, Vietnam, and the Philippines. Despite the crisis brought about by the Covid-19 pandemic, though with many challenges, the Lord of the Harvest has granted the Church and the Congregation with the gift of vocations.
In the Rogationist Mission station of Maumere, Indonesia six new seminarians in the stage of Seminary Preparatory Year (SPY) were received on September 8, Feast of the Nativity of Mary. For this year, there are 39 aspirants to the priesthood and two for the Brotherhood. The Rogationist aspirants study at the Society of Divine Word (SVD) Seminary in Maumere. There are also two Postulants who cannot leave yet for the Philippines due to the Covid-19 travel restrictions.
In Vietnam, eight aspirants (three in the 1st year, four in the 2nd year, and 2 in the final year) formally started their program at the Salesian Philosophy Institute, and two Religious students continue their Theological studies in the Salesian and Dominican Institutes.
In the Philippines, 13 new aspirants were received in the Seminary in Paranaque (Manila) on Sep. 13. In Cebu, there are 14 new seminarians, but the formal entry will be held sometime in October. Due to the Covid-19 emergency, some of the seminarians are still at home because of travel restrictions. Classes have resumed but they are still online. The Rogationist seminarians in the Philippines study in the College Seminaries in Manila and Cebu, both recognized by the civil government to offer university-level bachelor’s degrees.