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Thursday, 17 August 2023 07:37

Celebrations for the 100th anniversary in Indonesia

Indonesian Province Begins 100th Anniversary Celebrations in Jakarta

The largest province in the Carmelite Order began its celebration of the 100th anniversary of its founding with a lively festival of prayer, music, dance, and a gala dinner. During 2023, the Carmelite Province of Indonesia is celebrating its foundation by three Carmelites from the Dutch Province. The first event took place in the parish hall of Mary, Mother of Carmel in Jakarta on Friday, August 11. Besides friends and co-workers from the various area ministries of the Carmelites in the Jakarta area, Carmelites from many parts of the world were in attendance.

The evening began with Carmelite students acting as hosts, introducing the variety of presentations and dances. Internationally known vocalist and harpist, Angela July, led the evening. She was a finalist of the second season of Asia’s Got Talent. At the Carmelite celebration, she sang a number of songs, including two duets, first with the Carmelite Prior General, Miceal O’Neill, and later with the Vice Prior General and member of the Indonesian province, Benny Phang.

The Carmelite formation students from Malang provided both religious moments as well as dance from the various regions that today make up the Indonesian province. A procession of a statue of Our Lady of Mount Carmel began the evening with it being carried to a place of honor on the stage of the hall.

For the intermission, the attendees were provided a delicious meal featuring local dishes. Although the Indonesian language dominated, conversations could be heard in a variety of the languages spoken in the provinces around the world. It was a genuine celebration of the internationality of the Order with representations from the Netherlands (the founding province of the Indonesian province 100 years ago), the Philippines (a nearby province also founded by the Dutch), Vietnam, India, Italy, the USA, Perú, and Ireland. Three members of the General Curia in Rome are participating. Besides the prior general and vice prior general, the General Councilor for Asia, Australia, and Oceania, Robert Thomas Puthussery, took part. Sisters from various congregations also joined in the celebration.

Afer the dinner/intermission, the Carmelite formation students took over the stage, performing dances from the various regions of the country where the province now has established communities. As the evening went on, the audience became more and more active in the celebration. Eventually the stage was crowded with the various representations of the Carmelite family who were present.

Following the restoration of the Rio de Janeiro Province in Brazil, the Carmelites in the Netherlands turned their focus to undertaking the work of evangelization in the Dutch East Indies. The mission-minded St Titus Brandsma, then a provincial councilor of the Dutch Province, played no small role in this decision. Carmelites Clement van der Pas, the superior, Paschal Breukel, and Linus Hemckens arrived from the Netherlands to take over the island of Madura and the Eastern part of Java with headquarters in Malang. At the time, less than 200 native Javanese were Catholic.

The province was officially erected in 1967. In 2022 the Province had 405 members in 77 communities in Indonesia. A number of members also serve in other provinces or are residing in other province while they pursue advanced studies.

Other celebrations in Jakarta will be reported on in the next CITOC online. The celebrations continue in Malang this week.  

Pictures/Videos of the Events:

Opening Mass (To Be Posted)

First Banquet (YouTube)

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