The Capuchin friars in Australia continue their collaboration with the friars in Timor-Leste.
Along with our Australian friar Fr Luan, there are two friars from Portugal and two from Indonesia. There are also many young men in the various stages of their Capuchin training. At different times these friars need to visit their home countries for health checks, retreats and other significant events. And due to the small number of friars, the absence of one friar places significant demands on those remaining. The Capuchin mission in Timor-Leste asked if a friar from Australia could be made available to help out while one friar made his home visit.
To this end, Fr Ben, who at the time was stationed in South Melbourne, travelled to Timor-Leste to help out in the Capuchin Parish of Laleia over the Christmas and New Year period. He celebrated a number of Christmas Masses, visited the sick for confession and Holy Communion and helped out with the general demands of the life of the friars. This allowed for the full schedule of Masses to be undertaken in the three Church’s which make up the Parish.
(Pictures show Fr Ben at Mass in the small village chapel at Samalai; with children in traditional dress; and looking over recently laid foundations for the new chapel in Cairui)