Free in Christ
The two years in the noviciate of Lusaka had good contents in the formative encounters, conferences, apostolates, timetable. There was also a positive experience of internationality among the members of the community: Novices were coming from six different countries of Africa. This experience helped me to become free from by working on my thorn in the flesh, developing docility in my real self through the daily reflections, duties and the challenges I encountered.
The process of descent to hell with Christ in order to resurrect with him, deepening the knowledge of the charism of the Comboni Missionaries, rules of the Institute, spiritual readings, theological reflections, recollections, retreats and other materials on vows among others, had been a push towards configuration to Christ, a further step towards the ideal self with trust in God in order to be free in Christ. It was a challenge but with the help of God through the members of the Institute and lay people of good will, all went well. The goal was to be free for: I feel that something new has been incorporated in me as I start this life a religious experience. Everything is in the hand of God with the full collaboration of myself and the support and example of the elders ahead of me. The whole journey required the spirit of docility in order to become docibilitas. Integration was the focus. Being perfect has never been my absolute goal. My aim was being an integrated person intellectually, spiritually, physically and emotionally. I was happy at the end of the noviciate period though I know that it is not the end of formation. Formation is for life. The whole process continues to the next stage until Christ is formed in me. Since integration becomes a sole material for every life and more so in the religious one both in basic and on-going formation putting in mind that no one reaches full perfection as such like Christ.
The vows become a centre of love of God, a gift from God. Every day I need to grow in motivation, consistency, behaviour, sensitivity and attitude through integration in order to get closer to God and my brothers and sisters.
Being with Christ, myself and others was necessary. I discovered that relationship with God becomes a centre to reach others. Though challenging, I believe that getting updated and renew myself daily keeps me to look at the vows as a true gift from God in order to generate life peculiar to the vocation I am in. It requires a continuous positive response to the word of God and his will.
Lastly, I took the first vows on May 4, 2019, in Lusaka in the presence of Fr Christian delegate of the provincial superior Fr Louis Okot. It was a joyful moment with the people around who had accompanied me for the two years and I entrust my long journey ahead of me into God’s hands. This event will be my point of reference to remind me in the future of the love of God for me as I continue to discern daily the will of God in my life.
Thanks to all who supported me to grow. May St Daniel Comboni and St Josephine Bakhita pray for us.
By Sc. James Komakech, mccj