The visit of the Superior General to the Asian Provinces began in Singapore, at the house of Michael Thio, International President of the Saint Vincent de Paul Society, sharing a supper with his family. The following day Father Gregory celebrated the Eucharist with some of the memers of the Society in Saint Vincent de Paul Parish.
The next day his trip continued its course to one of the International Missions, coming to Port Moresby, the capital of Papua New Guinea, located on the banks of the Gulf of Papua on the southeast coast of the peninsula of the same name.
The Congregation has been present in this mission since 2003, directing the Holy Spirit Seminary, attending to the mission on the island of Trobiand in the Diocese of Alotau-Sideia, and providing pastoral animation at Our Lady of Fatima Parish in the Diocese of Bereina in Woitape.
At this same time, he also carried out the visit to the confreres of the Province of Indonesia, who are working in a Diocese on the frontier. Father Gregory likewise had the opportunity to visit with the confrere- Bishop in the Diocese of Alotau-Sideia, Rolando Santos, and with a confrere from the Philippines, Marceliano Oabel, who is serving in his diocese.
The visit of the Superior General to the International Mission of Papua New Guinea, as all his visits to the provinces, had the purpose of meeting each of the missionaries in the local communities, encouraging him from his own reality, and sharing his missionary experiences.
Holy Spirit Seminary in Port Moresby was overjoyed at the appointment of Jacek Tendej from the Province of Poland as the new rector. The occasion of his visit allowed the Superior General to participate in Father Tendej’s taking possession of his new role.
It can be said that the mission of Papua New Guinea is going well, but that, as in many other regions, it needs more missionaries, especially, for the most mountainous area of the region and also for the parish in the city of Port Moresby – Bomana and in its own Seminary
From there he went to the Solomon Islands. This International Mission was founded in 1993. There Father Gregory visited the confreres and had the opportunity to meet them as a community, to evaluate the current situation of the mission and of Holy Name of Mary Seminary in the city of Tenaru. Likewise, he met the candidates for the CM and celebrated the Eucharist in the parish situated in the same place as the formation house. At this moment we have five candidates for the Congregation: two who are in the seminary and three who are in the pre-seminary stage. This missionary team is made up of six confreres who serve on the mission and two who are studying in a sabbatical year.
As is Father Gregory’s custom, he always asks for confreres for the different international missions and, in this work in particular, is seeking missionaries prepared in philosophy, because it is necessary to reinforce this dimension of the seminary for which the Congregation is responsible.
On the following days, he was occupied in the meeting of the Visitors of the Asian-Pacific Region, which was held in Sidney, Australia. The coordinator of the meeting was the Visitor of the Province of Oceania, Michael Walsh. Also present were both Visitors of India, the Visitors of Indonesia and China, the Assistant Visitor of the Philippines, the Vice-Visitor of Vietnam, and the Superior of the International Mission of the Solomon Islands.
During the meeting, the topic was the reality of each of the provinces and its responsibility and closeness with the International Missions of the Solomon Islands and Papua New Guinea.
When the meeting concluded, he spent two days with the confreres of the Province of Oceania and had the opportunity to celebrate the Eucharist in the Parish of Saint Anthony of Padua in Marsfield, with the participation of many confreres from the area and from the Asian-Pacific Visitors’ Conference. The parish community lives and celebrates its faith in a very animated way through music and the festivity of the liturgy. After the Mass, the people stayed talking with priests who were visiting.
The following day he met with the Daughters of Charity of the Province of Australia in the Provincial House and visited the sick confreres.